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Audio Overview of South Asia Issues, Wednesday, 20 February 2019

APAC Assistance Operations Assistant Bhargav Reddy discusses Main Issues in South Asia.

Main Issues in South Asia

Firstly in BANGLADESH

  • The Dhaka Metropolitan Police department has issued a traffic advisory for tomorrow on the occasion of Shaheed Dibas. Public access to the Central Shaheed Minar premises will be restricted from 8 pm
  • Traffic on the Nilkhet, Palashi, Fuller Road, Bakshi Bazar, Chankharpul, Shahidullah Hall, Doyel Chattar, Gymnasium, Romana Chattar, the High Court, the TSC intersection and the Shahbagh intersection will be blocked and multiple diversions will be set up with several checkpoints for security.
  • Clients are advised to expect delays in most parts of Dhaka. Follow the directions by the police to avoid traffic delays and road closures.

PAKISTAN

  • More than ten domestic and international flights were delayed at the Alama Iqbal International Airport in Lahore yesterday after one of the runways had to be closed due to potholes on its surface after heavy rains in Lahore. The second runway of the airport was already closed for repair work.
  • Travelers protested the delay as flights to many destinations got affected, including a flight getting diverted to Islamabad International Airport.
  • Clients are advised to expect delays and make alternative travel plans if the Lahore airport closes for a major repair work of its runways this week.

INDIA

  • Saudi Crown Prince Mohamad bin Salman is visiting India today. Both countries are expected to sign Memorandum of Understanding on defense, healthcare, and other issues.
  • The External Affairs Ministry of India said that the talks on investment of USD 44 billion by Saudi Aramco and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company in Ratnagiri Refinery project in Maharashtra are likely during the visit.
  • Saudi Arabia has ranked India as one of the major strategic partners. The visit has been controversial as the Crown Prince visited Pakistan this week and was denied permission to travel directly from Pakistan to India.

Also in INDIA

  • The Union Cabinet yesterday gave its nod to re-issue the Triple Talaq ordinance that makes the practice of instant divorce by Muslim men a penal offense. Once signed by President Ram Nath Kovind, the ordinance will come into force for the third time in less than a year.
  • Under the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Ordinance, 2019, divorcing through instant triple talaq will be illegal and will attract a jail term of three years for the husband.
  • The government has asserted that it provides justice and equality to Muslim women. The controversy over the abolition of instant divorce practice has triggered protests by conservative Muslim organizations. With the general elections in April this year, the Muslim organization can potentially intensify their protests.

 

Main Issues in East Asia Pacific

Firstly in INDONESIA

  • Spanish energy company Repsol announced yesterday that a substantial natural gas discovery was made in Indonesia along with Malaysia’s Petronas and Japan’s Mitsui Oil Exploration. Repsol described the discovery in South Sumatra as “the largest gas find in Indonesia in 18 years” and one of the 10 largest in the world in the last year.
  • The discovery was made in the Sakakemang block in South Sumatra, where Repsol as an operator, holds a 45% working interest. Petronas owns another 45% and Mitsui Oil Exploration owns the remaining 10%. Repsol estimates that the well may hold at least 57 billion cubic metersĀ of recoverable resources.
  • Repsol holds several licenses in Indonesia, which is the focus of its exploration investment in Southeast Asia.

THAILAND

  • Yesterday police arrested three alleged members of a major drug trafficking gang and seized assets worth about USD 3.2million during raids on different locations in Bangkok.
  • Police have charged the accused with money laundering and drug trafficking. Police and members from other agencies were involved in the raid.
  • Clients are advised to avoid impoverished suburban areas of major cities. More raids are expected by police in different parts of Bangkok.

Also in THAILAND

  • A man was shot dead while his wife escaped unhurt during a shooting incident in Raman district of southern Yala province. The attack took place on a road between Tambon Koror and Tambon Karubee of Raman district.
  • Assailants were on the motorbike. Police are investigating the incident.
  • Clients are advised to employ extreme caution in the southern provinces of Thailand.

The PHILIPPINES

  • A debt collector of a finance company was shot dead by an unidentified assailant in San Julian town, Eastern Samar province in Eastern Visayas. The victim was shot in Sitio Palo-Uno of Putong village, San Julian municipality in Eastern Samar yesterday.
  • Police said personal grudges could be the motive of the attack as the attacker left USD 200 with the victim. The gun used in the shooting was recovered by the police from the crime scene.
  • Clients are advised to employ caution while traveling in Eastern Samar province. Gun violence is prevalent in all provinces of the Philippines fueled by illegal arms trafficking.

 

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