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first_imgBishkek: Twenty people were hospitalised in Kyrgyzstan following a skirmish between employees of a Chinese-owned mine and villagers living close to the gold deposit, officials said on Tuesday. Nineteen employees of the Chinese company that operates the Solton Sary gold mine in the central province of Naryn and one villager had been hospitalised after a conflict on Monday, a health ministry spokeswoman said. Around 300 villagers had gathered at the mine Monday to demand that the Chinese company cease work there, the interior ministry said. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from US”Both sides threw stones at each other” during the clashes that followed, the ministry said in a statement. Zhong Ji Mining won a license for the Solton Sary gold field in 2012, shortly after a popular uprising that saw an uptick in conflicts between mining companies and local communities in the ex-Soviet country. Pastoral farmers regularly accuse mining companies of causing ecological damage, accusations the companies deny. Some of the biggest clashes in recent years have occurred in the eastern Issyk Kul province where a mine owned by Toronto-listed company Centerra Gold accounted for 8.5 percent of GDP in 2018. Kyrgyzstan, a mountainous majority-Muslim republic of six million people in Central Asia, is the second poorest of the 15 countries which achieved independence after the Soviet collapse.last_img read more

first_imgWhen India finally made a daring move on Kashmir under the Modi government, notwithstanding the communication blackout and restrictions in Kashmir, the other entity to be most agitated and disgruntled with this development is the western neighbour, Pakistan. It is only too obvious that Kashmir has been a cornerstone of Pakistan’s relations with Kashmir. For long, Pakistan has used Kashmir to stoke a kind of ‘nationalism’ among its people that is essentially one marked by hatred for India. With the August o5 development, India sent out a message loud and clear across the world that Kashmir is India’s internal matter and that India is dealing with it as it thinks fit. But with the fulcrum of bilateral ties with Pakistan declared entirely Indian, the neighbour’s unease led it to take steps that are indicative of several crucial points for consideration. The expulsion of Indian envoy Ajay Bisaria from Pakistan stands testimony to how Pakistan views its powerful neighbour primarily through the lens of a disputed territory from a shared history: the Partition. The expulsion of the Indian envoy was a move to announce the downgraded ties with India over its decision to unilaterally turn the disputed region into a Union Territory under India. It was India’s diplomatic maturity that it still urged Pakistan to review its decision. India’s regret at this turn of events is genuine as positive ties with a neighbour is an asset for unforeseen times. On the other side, given Pakistan’s instability and internal dynamics, its focus on Kashmir and animosity with India does little for their own good. Pakistan has already made it clear that it will not send its newly-appointed High Commissioner Moinul Haque to India. Haque was appointed to the post three months after the previous Pakistani envoy Sohail Mahmood took charge as Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary. A stable Pakistan is certainly in India’s best interest but when the neighbouring state shows little inclination for both its internal stability and diplomatic ties with India, the challenge increases in magnitude for India to safeguard its region from the vile intentions of the disgruntled state. As if it was not bad enough to suspend trade and talks, sensationalism is resorted to once again with a former Pakistani envoy indulging in war-mongering. Pakistan’s former High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit warned of war if India crosses a red line in Jammu and Kashmir. When both the countries on either side of the “red line” are in need of development, education, healthcare, better economy and happier society, and when both countries are blessed with genuine intellectuals of stature, the talks about war should be a commonly agreed upon anathema.last_img read more