Here’s your daily dose of Digestible News covering: mild earthquake in Quetta, assurance from the US that no group will attack Pakistan from Afghan soil, Pak-Iran agreement to enhance security and intelligence sharing, and more!
Quetta and vicinity hit by mild earthquake
Digestible News 01: A mild earthquake with a magnitude of 4.2 on the Richter scale struck Quetta and adjacent areas late Tuesday according to Geo News.
The seismological center said that tremors spread from a depth of 11 kilometers and that the epicenter of the quake was located 95 kilometers north-west from Quetta, near the Pak-Afghan border. Fortunately, no loss of life or property was reported.
The US assures Pakistan no group will be allowed to attack Pakistan from Afghan soil
Digestible News 02: Briefing the Senate Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs on United States-Pakistan ties Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua said that the (US) has assured Pakistan that no group, including Indian spy agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), would be allowed to launch attacks on Pakistani soil from across the Afghan border.
Janjua also commented on cross-border terrorism maintaining that terror groups operate across the Pak-Afghan boundary and not from within the country. “In Afghanistan, 45 percent of the country is not under government control, which is why the Haqqani network and other terror groups do not need a safe haven in Pakistan,” she added.
Pakistan-Iran agree to enhance security cooperation and intelligence sharing
Digestible News 03: Inter-service Public Relations (ISPR) on Tuesday said that Pakistan and Iran following a meeting between Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa and Iran’s Defence Minister Brigadier Amir Hatami, have agreed to work on better security cooperation and intelligence sharing with a particular stress on disallowing any third party to use their lands against each other.
“In this regard, various steps will be taken which include establishing a communication hotline between the field commanders, fencing by Iran on their side of the border, coordinated border patrolling, intelligence sharing and more frequent interactions,” read the ISPR statement.
Revenue minister says information contained in Paradise Leaks is uncertified
Digestible News 04: The information regarding the offshore wealth accumulation of several Pakistani notables in the recently leaked Paradise Papers is uncertified and therefore cannot be held as evidence in a court of law said Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on Revenue, Haroon Akhtar Khan in an interview to DawnNews on Tuesday.
Calling it a difficult situation for the Federal Bureau of Revenue (FBR) due to limited jurisdiction, Khan explained that “If a person has filed their returns, the FBR can only track assets that he has acquired within five years.” “In case returns have not been filed, the board can only track assets acquired within the decade,” he added.
Cop continues firing and kills suspect already down on the ground: Faisalabad
Digestible News 05: A video available with The Express Tribune shows a cop continuously firing and subsequently killing one of two robbery suspects who appeared to pose no threat as he was already on the ground injured after being involved in a shootout incident near Milad Chowk in Faisalabad.
According to the footage the suspect, identified as Asif, could have been taken into custody alive by ASI Liaquat but he fired repeatedly while the policeman’s colleagues made no attempt to stop him from doing so.
New oil and gas deposits found in K-P: Pakistan Oilfields Limited
Digestible News 06: Fresh deposits of oil and gas have been drilled and are currently being tested in a developing well located in the province of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), Pakistan Oilfields Limited (POL) announced on Tuesday. Production from the well is expected to start February 2018.
In light of the new discovery, POL’s share price increased 1.14%, or Rs7.21, to Rs638.76 with a volume of 638,100 shares on Tuesday- with the share price hike also partially being linked to turmoil in oil-rich Saudia Arabia where the crown prince dismissed more prominent political members from the House of Saud.
Shahbaz Sharif claims Zardari embezzled Rs.6 billion tax-payers’ money
Digestible News 07: Speaking to the media after inaugurating a kidney transplant facility in Lahore on Tuesday, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif alleged that Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari was involved in the embezzlement of Rs6 billion of tax-payers’ money- further adding that Pakistan Muslim League’s (PML-N’s) opponents have not been able to prove any corruption allegations against the ruling party.
Shahbaz also presented a united front saying he will abide by his elder brother and party chief Nawaz Sharif- which appears to be an attempt to muffle news of reported tensions between the two brothers with Nawaz seemingly unhappy that party leaders were apparently considering his replacement with his younger brother.