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Saturday, December 11

Chief of Army Staff, visited South Waziristan Agency

Dated: Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Chief of Army Staff , General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani visited South Waziristan Agency today to monitor the progress of Quick Impact Projects. These projects are being undertaken by Pakistan Army, in consultation with local tribes and in coordination with the Civil Administration, for social uplift of the affected areas.
COAS visited Higher Secondary School at Makeen in North Waziristan Agency that was rebuilt jointly by Pakistan Army and Pakistan Air Force as a gesture of support for the locals who suffered in war against terrorism. Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar Suleman, Chief of Air Staff  inaugurated the school. COAS later performed Earth Breaking of a Model Health facility at Ladha in South Waziristan Agency, being established with the assistance of United Arab Emirate  Government.
COAS thanked UAE Government for the financial assistance and local population for their whole hearted support. He pledged that Pakistan Army will continue working for peace and social progress of the area.
Earlier on arrival in the area, the COAS and CAS were received by the Corps Commander, Lieutenant General Asif Yasin Malik.

                                      Chief of Army Staff (COAS), General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani alongwith Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar Suleman, Chief of Air Staff (CAS) visited Higher Secondary School at Makeen in North Waziristan Agency that was rebuilt jointly by Pakistan Army and Pakistan Air Force today. (07-12-2010)-ISPR

Chief of Army Staff (COAS), General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani alongwith Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar Suleman, Chief of Air Staff (CAS) performed Earth Breaking of a Model Health facility at Ladha in South Waziristan Agency, being established with the assistance of United Arab Emirate (UAE) Government today. (07-12-2010) – Photo ISPR

Wednesday, December 8

Anti-Tank Guided Missile was conducted at Tilla Ranges near Jhelum. (5-12-2010)

 photo by ISPR.

Mr Liu Jain, Ambassador of China called on Chief of Army Staff, at General Headquarters today.

Dated: Monday, December 6, 2010 

His Excellency Mr Liu Jain, Ambassador of China called on Chief of Army Staff, General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani at General Headquarters today.
The visiting dignitary remained with him for some time and discussed the matters of mutual interest between China Pak Relations.

Mr Liu Jain, Ambassador of China called on Chief of Army Staff, General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani at General Headquarters on Monday. (06-12-2010) 

Monday, December 6

Clinton warns of Iranian, Chinese gains in Latin America

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Friday that Iran and China are making "quite disturbing" gains in Central and South America.

In wide-ranging comments on the region, she also said the Obama administration will work to improve relations among even its harshest critics in the Western Hemisphere, including Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, and is looking to the Castro brothers in Cuba for some reciprocal action in response to the president's easing of travel and other restrictions.
Efforts by the Bush administration to isolate certain Latin American leaders had failed, she said, and the United States now must work to counter efforts by China, Iran and Russia to gain influence there.
"What we are doing hasn't worked very well and in fact, if you look at the gains, particularly in Latin American, that Iran is making and China is making, it is quite disturbing," Clinton said at a town hall meeting at the State Department with senior Foreign Service Officers.
"They are building very strong economic and political connections with a lot these leaders. I don't think that is in our interests," she said.
"We have no guarantees here that we can create a better relationship with someone who has a different view of politics, the economy and so much else. But we think it is worth trying to just explore this and see what comes of it," Clinton said.
"I have to say that I don't think -- in today's world that is a multipolar world where we are competing for attention and
relationships with at least the Russians, the Chinese, the Iranians -- that it is in our interests to turn our backs on countries in our own hemisphere."
She pointed to a large Iranian presence in the Nicaraguan capital, Managua, as an example of what other countries are doing in Central and South America.
"We are looking at how to deal with [Nicaraguan President Daniel] Ortega," she said. "The Iranians are building a huge embassy in Managua. You can only imagine what it's for."
Clinton's voice was hoarse, she coughed occasionally and seemed to be nursing a cold, but she made no mention of her health.
On Cuba, Clinton said the United States is awaiting a response from Cuban leaders Raúl and Fidel Castro.
"We would like to see some reciprocity from the Castros on political prisoners, human rights and other matters," she said. "So we are looking at a number of different relationships and trying to figure out whether we can be more productive. My bottom line is what's best for America, how do we try to influence behavior that is more in our interest than not."
Later, Clinton appeared to be fighting back tears when she spoke at a ceremony to honor Foreign Service officers who had been killed in the line of duty.
She spoke about 25-year-old Brian Adkins, who was just beginning his State Department career when he was murdered this year in Ethiopia.
"Please know how grateful we are for his selflessness and service to his country," Clinton said.
Adkins' name and those of three other Foreign Service officers were added to a plaque in the State Department entrance.

Sweden To Boost High North Air, Naval Defenses

HELSINKI - Sweden's capital investments in defense will prioritize weapon procurement and infrastructure improvements to strengthen the military's air and naval capability in the High North, said Defense Ministe.

The strategy is to develop a military with a modular structure and a high degree of readiness that can react to threats against the country, the High North region, and can participate in international peacekeeping missions, Tolgfors(DEFENCE MINISTER) said.

"Our direction in defense has a definite neighborhood perspective, and this impacts on our Air Force and naval capabilities, and their primary tasks are neighborhood-based," he said.
Sweden intends to maintain 100 Gripen C/D combat and reconnaissance aircraft, a capability that is at least twice as large as its Nordic neighbors Finland, Norway and Denmark, the defense minister said.
Investments also are planned to strengthen Sweden's conventional submarine fleet in 2011-2014 to ensure security in the High North, Tolgfors said, especially because neighboring Denmark and Finland do not have a submarine capability.
Sweden's capital spending in 2011 will focus on five main programs: submarine modernization, tactical helicopters, the Armored Modular Vehicle (AMV), Archer artillery and the Gripen-NG projects. These carry a total cost of just under $8 billion.
"Fighter aircraft and submarines are vital elements in the defense of Sweden. We do not have hundreds of miles of land borders that we need to fear for. We do have hundreds of miles of coastline to protect," Tolgfors said.
The Navy's submarine fleet modernization program carries an estimated cost of $1.6 billion. The Navy will replace part of its existing sub fleet with next-generation submarines. There will also be a midlife upgrade for two Gotland-class submarines.
The Archer artillery program, which is being run jointly with Norway, and the Army's AMV project, will cost about $338 million. The Army will also place an order in 2011 for a new tactical helicopter type, while the Navy is acquiring a new signals ship.
The Gripen-NG program will include acquisition and installation of the Meteor active radar-guided, beyond-visual-range, air-to-air missile system

Russian Satellites Fail to Reach Orbit, Crash Into Pacific of Hawaii

MOSCOW - Three Russian satellites crashed into the Pacific on Dec. 5 after the rocket carrying them failed to reach orbit following their launch, the defense ministry said.

The rocket carrying the Glonass navigation satellites, Russia's answer to the U.S. Global Positioning System (GPS), blasted off as planned from the Baikonur, Kazakhstan, cosmodrome at 1:25 p.m.

However, a second-stage booster rocket failed to carry its payload into orbit and is believed to have crashed into the Pacific of Hawaii, space industry sources told Russian news agencies.
"The ballistics experts have checked everything: the upper-stage rocket with the satellites is not on the main, intermediate nor emergency orbit," a source told the RIA Novosti news agency.
"Our calculations show that the upper-stage rocket with the satellites probably fell into the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii."
Interfax cited another source as saying that the satellites likely burned up in the atmosphere.
The Glonass system, developed by the Russian military in the 1980s, is being vaunted as Russia's answer to GPS and to Europe's fledgling Galileo system.
The three Glonass-M satellites, weighing 1.4 tons, were supposed to complete a constellation of satellites already put in place by Russia.
Russia's defense ministry confirmed the loss but said it would not affect the roll-out of the new positioning system.
"There are currently 26 satellites in the Glonass constellation, including two emergency satellites. This allows complete coverage of Russian Federation territory," the ministry said in a statement.
"The Russian space industry's capacity enables us to react rapidly to what's happened," it said, adding that the system would be fully in place next year.

Sunday, December 5

WASHINGTON: Pakistan’s army chief mused about forcing out President Asif Ali Zardari who has made preparations for a coup , leaked by US diplomatic cables said Tuesday.

Leaked cables: Pakistan army chief mused takeover

The latest tranche of memos, obtained by whistleblower site WikiLeaks and reported by The New York Times  also showed the United States was more concerned than it let on publicly about Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal.
General Ashfaq Kayani, chief of Pakistan’s powerful military, told the US ambassador during a March 2009 meeting that he “might, however reluctantly,”pressure Zardari to resign, according to a cable cited by the Times.
Kayani was quoted as saying that he might support Asfandyar Wali Khan, leader of the Awami National LeagueParty, as the new president — not Zardari’s arch-nemesis Nawaz Sharif.
In another cable quoted by both newspapers, US Vice President Joe Biden recounted to Britain’s then prime minister Gordon Brown a conversation with Zardari last year.
Zardari told him that Kayani and the Inter-Services Intelligence agency “will take me out,” according to the cable. The Guardian said the cables also showed that Zardari has made extensive preparations in case he is killed.
Zardari is the widower of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, who was assassinated in 2007. He took power in 2008, returning Pakistan to civilian leadership after nearly a decade under military ruler Pervez Musharraf.
Tensions between Zardari and the army are no secret, and Pakistan often witnesses coup rumors.
After Kayani met in September with Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, the now-exiled Musharraf quipped: “I can assure you they were not discussing the weather.”
The cables also laid bare US frustrations at what officials see as Pakistan’s refusal to cut off ties with extremists such as Lashkar-e-Taiba, which is blamed for carrying out the bloody 2008 siege of Mumbai.
“There is no chance that Pakistan will view enhanced assistance levels in any field as sufficient compensation for abandoning support for these groups, which it sees as an important part of its national security apparatus against India,” Ambassador Anne Patterson said in a cable quoted by the Times.
The cables show that the United States was mindful of Pakistani sensitivities about cooperation — both on military action and on Islamabad’s prized nuclear arsenal.
One memo quoted by the Times said that 12 US Special Operations soldiers had deployed with Pakistani troops near the Afghan border.
The cables also touch on allegations of extrajudicial killings by Pakistani forces, according to the Times.
A cable last year suggested there was credible evidence that the Pakistani army or paramilitary forces killed some detainees after an offensive against Taliban insurgents in lawless northwestern regions.
The embassy said that news of killings should not be leaked to the press, for fear of offending the Pakistani army. However, this year the United States said it would cut off support for some Pakistani units following the release of a video that appeared to show extrajudicial killings.