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Thursday,29-September-2022

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India and China militaries hold talks to resolve border dispute

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India and China Flags.

The twelfth round of top commanders-level talks between India and China are underway at Moldo on the Chinese side in the Ladakh region on Saturday.

The talks are happening after a gap of three months. Indian military delegates are discussing disengagement at friction areas like Hot Springs, Gogra and 900 square km Depsang plains.

Indian delegation is led by Leh-based XIV Corps chief Lt Gen P.G.K. Menon and Additional Secretary (East Asia) in the Ministry of External Affairs, Naveen Srivastava.

The Chinese military delegation is led by Commander of the PLA’s Western Theatre Command Xu Qiling, who was appointed earlier this month.

The build-up in Depsang was not being considered part of the current standoff that started in May last year as escalation here took place in 2013. India has insisted during recent military commander meetings to resolve all issues across the Line of Actual Control.

“The initial attempt will be to resolve Gogra and Hot Springs. Finding a solution to Depsang might be tricky and take longer,” said the officer.

In April, during 11th round of Corps Commander level talk, the focus was disengagement on friction points at Gogra, Hot Springs and Depsang. On February 20, Indian and Chinese militaries held 10th round of dialogue to de-escalate tension at the Line of Actual Control.

Till now, apart from 11 round of Corps Commanders-level talks, the two forces have also held 10 Major Generals level, 55 Brigadiers-level talks and 1,450 calls over the hotlines.

China has been enhancing military infrastructure across the Line of Control.

Looking at it, India has changed its posture towards China, unlike its previous defensive approach that placed a premium on fending on Chinese aggression, India is now catering to military options to strike back and has reoriented its military accordingly.

India has reoriented around 50,000 troops whose main focus will be the disputed border with China. The reorientation comes when China is refurbishing its existing air-fields in Tibetan Plateau that will allow twin-engines fighter aircraft to be stationed, sources said.

In addition, China has also brought troops from the Tibet Military region to the Xinjiang region that passes through Karakoram range down south Uttarakhand.

Further, they have deployed larger numbers of long range artillery and are rapidly building infrastructure in the Tibetan Plateau.

So far, the troops of two Himalayan giants have disengaged from both the banks of Pangong Tso in February this year.

International News

Israeli Minister orders expulsion of families of Palestinian attacker

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Israeli Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked has ordered the expulsion of families of a Palestinian man who carried out an attack five years ago in East Jerusalem.

Taking to Twitter on Wednesday, Shaked said that she sent a notice to seven family members of Fadi al-Qanbar who killed four Israeli soldiers when he rammed his truck into a group of troopers in East Jerusalem’s Abu Tor neighbourhood in 2017, asking them to “leave the country within a week or (they will) be forcefully evicted”, reports Xinhua news agency.

The Minister also asked Public Security Minister Omer Bar-Lev to prepare policing forces to expel the seven if they won’t leave by October 6.

“Israel should fight terrorism with all the available means and it’s time to use also this tool for deterrence,” Shaked said.

The recent move came after a ruling by a Jerusalem court on September 21 that Israel can revoke the residency permits of al-Qanbar’s 17 family members.

The Palestinian family lives in Jabel Mukaber, a neighbourhood of East Jerusalem.

In past years, several Israeli interior ministers made attempts to expel family members of Palestinian attackers but were usually blocked by the Supreme Court.

The al-Qanbar family told the Israeli daily Ha’aretz newspaper that they intend to appeal the ruling.

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UN Women supports women’s rights in Iran

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 In recent days Iran has seen deep public unrest, with demonstrations and protests taking place in some 80 cities, triggered by the tragic death of Mahsa Amini, who was detained by authorities in Tehran on September 13 and died, while in custody, three days later.

In a statement on Wednesday, the New York-headquartered UN Women said that “it stands with the women of Iran in their rightful demands to protest injustice without reprisal, and to be free to exercise their bodily autonomy, including their choice of dress; and also supports them in seeking accountability, and the upholding of their basic human rights as stipulated in the Charter of the UN”.

“We call on relevant authorities to support and enable the expression of their full human rights in a safe environment without fear of violence, prosecution, or persecution.

“We align with the remarks by the High Commissioner for Human Rights on the need to ensure the rights to due process and release for all women who have been arbitrarily detained and with the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council, in the call for the Iranian authorities to hold an independent, impartial, and prompt investigation into Ms Amini’s death, to make the findings of the investigation public and to hold all perpetrators accountable.

“We reiterate our expression of condolences to the family of Mahsa Amini. We remain steadfast in upholding the rights of women and girls in every part of the world,” the UN Women added.

According to the Iran Human Rights (IHR), a Norway-based organisation, at least 76 protesters have been killed by Iranian security forces in the 11 days of unrest across the country against Amini’s death.

The organisation also said that hundreds of people have also been arrested, including 20 journalists.

The anti-government demonstrations have spread to more than 80 cities and towns across Iran since Amini’s funeral on September 17.

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Erdogan vows to protect Turkey’s rights against Greece

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to “use all means” to protect Ankara’s rights and interests against Greece.

“We will not fail to use all the means to defend our country’s rights and interests against Greece, when necessary,” Erdogan said at a press conference after a cabinet meeting on Monday.

His remarks came amid a recent escalation of tension between two neighbours over their disputes in the Aegean Sea, reports Xinhua news agency.

He accused Athens of making policies based on “provocative actions” and suggested that Greece is being “dragged into a swamp with military build-ups”.

“This is a dangerous game for both the Greek politicians, the Greek state, the Greek people,” Erdogan said.

Relations between the two countries have long been tense over a series of issues, including territory and energy disputes in the Aegean and the Mediterranean Seas.

The semi-official Anadolu Agency reported on Sunday the footage of Greek ships, carrying military vehicles, landed on Lesbos and Samos islands on September 18 and 21, respectively.

Turkey warned Greece that these islands have non-military status according to international treaties.

Earlier this month, Erdogan accused Greece of “harassing” Turkish fighter jets in the Aegean Sea and the eastern Mediterranean, a claim that Greece has rejected.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on September 11 said despite the recent “unacceptable” comments of Erdogan, he was “always available and open to a meeting with the Turkish leader”.

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