[NFA] President Donald Trump will sharply reduce the number of U.S. forces in Afghanistan from 4,500 to 2,500 by mid-January, the Pentagon announced on Tuesday, stopping short of a full withdrawal from America's longest war. Colette Luke has the latest.
Trump and Secretary Mark Esper had clashed in recent months, most notably over Trump's threat to use active duty troops to suppress street protests over racial injustice in the United States during the summer. This report produced by Jonah Green.
After the conclusion of 2+2 dialogue between India and US in New Delhi, the Spokesperson for US State Department, Morgan Ortagus, said the India-US relations go beyond political parties and that the bilateral cooperation between New Delhi and Washington DC will remain important irrespective of the outcome of the upcoming presidential elections. "It's incredibly important for Secretary Pompeo and Secretary Esper to go to India, and have this 2+2 (dialogue). Our relationship between the United States and India has been around for very long time and will be around for decades and much longer in the future. The relationship goes beyond political parties...We believe that the values that bind us together will be important for whoever wins this presidential election," Ortagus told ANI on October 28.
One of the highlights of the latest edition of the India-US 2+2 dialogue was the signing of the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement. The pact, signed during the visit of US Secretaries of State and Defence - Mike Pompeo and Mark Esper - to meet their Indian counterparts - Subrahmanyam Jaishankar and Rajnath Singh - in Delhi, will provide Indian forces sensitive data from American military satellites. This is being pegged as a major boost for India amid the stand-off with China along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh. Air Marshal Dhiraj Kukreja (retd) and former Foreign Secretary Kanwal Sibal help decode the significance of this agreement in a conversation with Hindustan Times' Aditi Prasad. Watch the full video for more.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 09:01Published
[NFA] A federal appeals court on Friday rejected an attempt by U.S. President Donald Trump's campaign to block President-elect Joe Biden from being declared the winner of Pennsylvania, dealing another significant setback to Trump's bid to overturn the Nov. 3 election. This report produced by Jillian Kitchener.
Rajnath Singh, Defence Minister of India, commented on the border tension with China, at the 18th edition of the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit. While issuing an assurance that the Narendra Modi administration would not allow any violation of India's territorial integrity, Singh said that talks with China on multiple levels were underway, but there was no guarantee about the outcome. He hailed the bravery of Indian soldiers at the Line of Actual Control, and said that security forces had been given a free hand to drive the Chinese army back in case of aggression. Watch the full video for more.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 08:33Published
The ministry of external affairs said that India and China have agreed to maintain dialogue to resolve the Ladakh standoff. "The talks between India and China were candid, in-depth and constructive. Both sides exchanged views on disengagement at all friction points along LAC. They have agreed to maintain dialogue through military and diplomatic channels," MEA Spokesperson, Anurag Srivastava said. The ministry, however, declined to comment on reports that two sides are discussing proposals for disengagement. "When we have something to share, we will share," Srivastava said. MEA further said that the two sides will soon hold another round of talks on border standoff. "They have also agreed to have another round of meeting soon," Srivastava added. India and China border standoff has entered its seventh month. Thousands of troops from both sides have dug in for the winter along LAC in Ladakh sector. They are reportedly discussing proposals to withdraw tanks and artillery from the area.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 02:05Published
Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat said the situation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh remained tense and that India's posturing has been "unambiguous". "The situation along the LAC in eastern Ladakh remains tense and the People's Liberation Army is facing unanticipated consequences for its misadventure in Ladakh because of firm and strong responses by Indian forces," Gen Rawat said. Talking about the overall security calculus, Gen Rawat said border confrontations, transgressions and unprovoked tactical military actions spiralling into a larger conflict cannot be discounted. The Chief of Defence Staff also touched on the issue of cross border terrorism from Pakistan and the way it has been dealt with by the Indian armed forces. Watch the video for more details.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 02:51Published
AIMIM Leader Asaduddin Owaisi has lashed out at the BJP over am party leader’s remark on conducting ‘surgical strikes’ in Old Hyderabad to weed out Rohingyas and nationals from Afghanistan and Pakistan. Owaisi challenged the BJP and said that they have 24 hours to name Pakistanis residing in the area. ‘The BJP leader said they will conduct surgical strikes and flush out Pakistanis and Rohingyas. I want to ask BJP on whom you would conduct surgical strikes? These people living in the old city are Indian citizens. I give you 24 hours to tell how many Pakistanis live here?’ Owaisi said. The AIMIM leader also mocked PM Modi and questioned why no ‘surgical strike’ was conducted on the Chinese forces who have taken over Indian territory in Ladakh. Owaisi said that PM Modi does not even name China even though the People’s Liberation Army has transgressed into Indian territory. The war of words comes ahead of the Greater Hyderabad Municipal polls. Earlier, BJP leader Tejasvi Surya had said that Owaisi speaks the language of rabid Islam and likened him to Jinnah. Watch the full video for all the details.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 02:42Published
BJP has lashed out at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi over his tweet slamming the Modi government over its handling of the China issue. Rahul had cited a news report which hinted at renewed Chinese activity in Doklam. ‘China's geopolitical strategy cannot be countered by a PR driven media strategy. This simple fact seems to elude the minds of those running GOI,’ Rahul had tweeted. Hitting back, Union Minister Pralhad Joshi said that Congress and Rahul Gandhi have no right to speak on the issue and alleged that IF India lost land to China before, it was because of the Congress party. Joshi further said that Rahul Gandhi does not believe in reading and understanding and urged him to concentrate on the internal issues of the party. India and China have also been locked in a standoff in Ladakh since May. The Congress leader has attacked the BJP on several occasions over the issue and accused the Prime Minister of lying to the country over the status of the ground situation in the region. Watch the full video for all the details.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 01:47Published
Congress' GN Azad on Nov 22 commented on party's performance. He said, "Congress is on its lowest in the last 72 years. Congress does not have even the post of Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha during last two terms. But Congress won 9 seats in Ladakh hill council elections even as we were not expecting such a positive result."
Hundreds of farmers entered the national capital on Friday to hold peaceful protest at a north Delhi ground after facing tear gas and water cannons and clashing with security personnel while thousands remained at border points, undecided whether to go to the demonstration site identified by police. The day witnessed police using teargas shells, water cannons and multi-layer barriers to block the protesters and the farmers pelting stones and breaking barricades in some places in their determination to push through as part of their 'Delhi Chalo' march against the Centre's new farm laws. Farmer leaders from Punjab and Haryana said the stir has now become a "people's movement", drawing support from various sections of society. Meanwhile, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar appealed to the protesting farmers to end their agitation and said the government is ready to discuss all issues with them. Watch the full video for more details.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 03:49Published
With several potential COVID vaccines expected to see the light of day in coming months, Delhi Health Minister Satydenar Jain on November 28 said that the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government will vaccinate the entire population of the national capital within 3-4 weeks after the availability of a shot. "Whenever the vaccine is available in Delhi, within 3-4 weeks it will be administered all over the national capital with the help of our health facilities such as polyclinics," the Delhi Health Minister told ANI.
With agitating farmers from Punjab knocking the door of the national capital to protest against the farm laws, farmers from western Uttar Pradesh are also likely to join their peers for the 'Delhi Chalo' protest. Bharatiya Kisan Union spokesperson Rakesh Tikait in Meerut said the government has failed to address the issue of farmers, and they will be leaving for Delhi to join the protesting farmers.
Dilip Ghosh, president of BJP's West Bengal unit, trained his guns on Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee as the poll campaign picks up pace. Ghosh said Banerjee gets terrified whenever senior BJP leaders like PM Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah visit the state. He was reacting to the Trinamool Congress chief calling BJP leaders 'outsiders' following Shah's recent trip. Ghosh also repeated his charge that the TMC is turning Bengal into Bangladesh. A day earlier, Union minister Rajnath Singh said that the BJP may even end up winning a 2/3rd majority in the state. He was speaking at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit. Bengal is set to go to polls early next year. Watch the full video for more.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 02:53Published
Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh interacted with Vietnamese counterpart General Ngo Xuan Lich during a bilateral meeting on November 27. An Implementation Agreement (IA) on Hydrography was signed between India and Vietnam. The event was held via video conferencing.
On the day that protesting farmers attempted to march to Delhi to seek revocation of three agriculture-related legislations, Union minister Rajnath Singh invited them for talks. Speaking at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit 2020, the minister said that as a son of a farmer, he could guarantee farmers that the government's farm laws would benefit them. He added that there was no possibility of the minimum support price regime being scrapped. Watch the full video for more.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 03:24Published
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar called for an immediate ceasefire to stop violence in Afghanistan. While speaking at the Afghanistan 2020 Conference, Jaishankar said that peace process must be Afghan-led, Afghan-owned & Afghan-controlled. He said, “India has invested heavily in peace and development of Afghanistan. We strongly believe that the gains of the last two decades must be preserved and the interests of the minorities, women and vulnerable sections must be ensured. The increasing level of violence in Afghanistan naturally remains a matter of grave concern.” He added, “While we support all efforts to bring peace and stability in Afghanistan, India calls for an immediate and comprehensive ceasefire.” Watch the full video for more details.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 01:47Published
While attending Afghanistan 2020 Conference via video conferencing, External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar on November 24 said, "India has invested heavily in Afghanistan. No part of Afghanistan is untouched by our 400 plus projects spread across all 34 provinces." "India called for an immediate and comprehensive ceasefire to stop violence in the country and reiterated that the peace process must be Afghan-led, Afghan-owned and Afghan-controlled," he added.
While attending India-Europe Strategy Group meeting via video conferencing on November 23, External Affairs Minister (EAM) Dr S Jaishankar said Europe is a natural partner when it comes to resources, technology or best practices, and our ability to work together can help shape global outcomes. He said, "For an India which is focused on deep reforms and profound transformation, Europe is a natural partner when it comes to resources, technology or best practices. Our ability to work together can help shape global outcomes."
Addressing at Centre for European Policy Studies virtually on November 17, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said that UN should take seriously that different people in the world are pointing out to shortcoming and relevance of the United Nations. "Different people in different parts of the world are pointing out to shortcoming and relevance of the United Nations, is something that the UN should take seriously. It's common sense. Everything requires updating. We can't let the interest of 1 or 2 countries that want to freeze one moment of history for their perpetual gain. The longer we let this gridlock continue, it's harming the UN," said Jaishankar.
Union minister Nitin Gadkari clarified on his recent viral speech in which he publicly reprimanded non-performing officials. At the 18th edition of the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit, the minister..
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 04:16Published
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has never interfered in the working of the defence and the home ministries, said current Raksha Mantri Rajnath Singh. He was asked about allegations that power in the NDA..
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 01:54Published