Plot to assassinate PM Imran reported by security agencies: Fawad
The Express Tribune | 1st April
Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry said on Friday that a plot to assassinate Prime Minister Imran Khan has been reported by the country's security agencies.
The minister took to his official Twitter handle to reveal that following these reports, the government has decided to “beef up” the premier’s security.

Troubled Lanka receives economic assistance amounting to USD 2.5 bn from India this year
The Island | 30th March
India has provided economic assistance to Sri Lanka amounting to USD 2.5 bn, so far this year, according to the Indian High Commission in Colombo. The announcement was made in the wake of External Affairs Minister (EAM) Dr. S. Jaishankar’s talks with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Foreign Affairs Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris and others on the first day of discussions, during his visit to Colombo on Monday (28).

Deuba leaving for Delhi today with eye on rebooting bilateral relations
The Kathmandu Post | 1st April
During Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba’s visit to India starting Friday, cross-border railway will be high on the agenda. Prime Minister Deuba and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi are scheduled to inaugurate the Kurtha-Jayanagar railway on Saturday, paving the way for the train to officially start chugging along the tracks between Nepal and India. 

PAKISTAN

US Denies PM Imran’s Charge Of Conspiracy To Oust Him From Power
The Nation | 1st April
The US State Department on Thursday rejected the claims from Pakistan Premier Imran Khan that United States is involved in a conspiracy to remove him from power.
The State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters there was “no truth” to the allegations. “We are closely following developments in Pakistan. We respect (and) we support Pakistan s constitutional process and the rule of law,” Price said.​​​​​​

China hopes Pakistan’s political parties to uphold country’s interests
The News | 1st April
A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Thursday that Chinese government expected that all the political parties in Pakistan would stay united and uphold supreme interest of country’s development and stability.
While responding to a question about no-confidence move against incumbent Prime Minister Imran Khan by the opposition, Chinese spokesman Wang Wenbin said, “China is committed to non-interference policy, adding that as an all weather strategic cooperative partner and friendly neighbour of Pakistan, it is our sincere hope that all parties in Pakistan will stay united and uphold the major interest of country’s developments and stability.”
 

SRI LANKA

IMF to start talks with Sri Lanka on loan request in coming days
Daily Mirror | 1st April
The International Monetary Fund will initiate discussions with Sri Lankan authorities on a possible loan program in coming days, IMF spokesperson Gerry Rice said on Thursday, as the Asian country seeks to stave off a severe economic crisis.
Rice said the discussions would continue during the visit of Sri Lankan Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksa in Washington for the spring meetings of the IMF and World Bank next month.

Sri Lanka, India sign agreements to intensify cooperation in fields of education, culture, security, power, fisheries, and technology
Colombo Page | 29th March
The Minister of External Affairs of India Dr. S. Jaishankar, who is on a three day official visit to attend the 5th BIMSTEC Summit in Colombo, has called on his Sri Lankan counterpart, Minister Prof. G.L Peiris, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 28 March, 2022.
The two Ministers, using the opportunity on the sidelines of the Summit, reviewed the broad spectrum of political, economic, social and cultural ties between Colombo and New Delhi that inextricably intertwine the two nations from time immemorial, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said today.

Lanka going back to days of kerosene lamps and charcoal clothes irons
The Island | 29th March
With power cut periods extending, kerosene lamps and coconut shell charcoal irons have made a comeback.
Businessmen in Hatton said that the demand for kerosene lamps and charcoal irons had increased after about 50 years.
One glass chimney lamp is being sold at Rs 1,500 while a charcoal iron is priced at Rs 900.
 

AFGHANISTAN

India, WFP inked agreement over grain distribution in Afghanistan
The Khaama Press | 1st April
Ministry of External Affairs of India said that the government has struck a deal with the United Nations World Food Program over distributing the next batch of wheat in Afghanistan.
The wheat batch aided by India for the Afghan people includes 10,000 metric tonnes.
Previously, WFP distributed 10,000 metric tonnes of Indian wheat in Afghanistan that were sent to the country through Pakistani ports. The agreement was made in February in the Italian capital Rome the new one is struck on Thursday, March 31, 2022.

Trilateral Meeting Held Between FMs from Afghanistan, China, Pakistan
Afghanistan Times | 31st March
The foreign ministers of Afghanistan, China and Pakistan held a trilateral meeting in China, where they discussed the regional cooperation and mutual interests.
The meeting was attended by the acting Foreign Minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi, Chinese Foreign Minister, Wang Yi and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan, Shah Mahmood Qureshi.

Activists Meet to Discuss Current Situation, Women's Rights
TOLO News | 31st March
Dozens of civil society activists from across Afghanistan gathered in Kabul to discuss vital issues including education and employment rights for Afghan women, saying the Islamic Emirate must hear the voice of citizens.
The participants stressed that national unity is one of the priorities of Afghanistan and the rulers must accept the demands of the people.
 

BANGLADESH

Bangladesh, South Korea agree to take partnership to next level
Prothom Alo | 31st March
Bangladesh and the Republic of Korea at the third foreign ministry consultations agreed to explore elevating their comprehensive partnership to the next level in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the diplomatic relations.
The consultations were held at the state guest house Padma in Dhaka.
Bangladesh and the Republic of Korea also agreed to deepen cooperation in trade and investment, infrastructure development, human resources development, defence, agriculture, fisheries and biotechnology, and regional and global issues of common interest and concern, including global peace and security and climate change.

Mass Covid vaccination drive extended until April 3
Bangladesh Post | 31st March
The second round of mega Covid vaccination drive without any registration has been extended by three more days until April 3, said Health Minister Zahid Maleque on Thursday.
The minister made the announcement while handing Health Minister’s National Award 2020 at the city’s Osmani Memorial Auditorium.

Moody's: Bangladesh's actual GDP growth 6% in FY22
Dhaka Tribune | 31st March
Moody's expects real GDP growth to reach 6% in fiscal 2022 and 6.5% in fiscal 2023, driven by exports and domestic demand.
Moody's Investors Service on Wednesday affirmed Bangladesh's long-term issuer and senior unsecured ratings at Ba3 and with a stable outlook.
The short-term issuer ratings stand at Not Prime.
 

BHUTAN

Children 5-11 years to get second dose on April 4
Kuensel | 30th March
A week-long nationwide second dose vaccination campaign for 83,277 children between five and 11 years will begin on April 4.
The first nationwide campaign which started on March 6 vaccinated about 97.25 children. Those who missed the campaign received the vaccine from the nearby health facilities.
A health official said that to date about 99 percent of children were vaccinated with the first dose.

Towards collaboration on agricultural and processed food products
Business Bhutan | 31st March
In a bid to establish collaboration on agricultural and processed food products, the Embassy of India (EoI) in Thimphu organized a virtual meeting on March 21 between Bhutan and the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority of India (APEDA).
The virtual meeting was a follow-up to the previous interaction between the two sides. 
 

MALDIVES

VP Naseem concludes fruitful official visit to UAE
Raajje | 31st March
Vice President Faisal Naseem has concluded his official visit to the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The Vice President departed to Dubai earlier this week, to attend the World Government Summit 2022.
During his four-day visit, VP Naseem signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on behalf of the Maldivian government on the Exchange of Experience on Government Development and Modernization, with the Minister of Cabinet Affairs of UAE, Mohamed Al Gerawi.

India’s Afcons donates computers to Hithadhoo School
Sun | 29th March
India’s Afcons Infrastructure Limited has donated computer systems to the Hithadhoo School in Addu City.
Hithadhoo School’s principal Dr. Asiyath Mohamed Didi told Sun that Afcons donated 25 computer systems to the school on Monday.
Asiyath said that the donation had come at an opportune time, as the school had been in dire need of computer systems for some time.
 

MYANMAR

US, Singapore Leaders Urge Myanmar Junta to Free Political Detainees
The Irrawaddy | 30th March
US President Joe Biden and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong jointly called for the release of all political detainees in Myanmar, including State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and President U Win Myint, as well as foreign detainees, in a statement released after talks at the White House.
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and U Win Myint have been detained by the military regime since it ousted Myanmar’s democratically elected government in a coup on Feb.

Myanmar army chief issues law sending junta police officers to war
Myanmar Now | 29th March
The military council issued a new law last week enabling them to force members of Myanmar’s police to join the fight against anti-coup resistance forces across the country.
One of the five objectives outlined in the 22-page Police Force Law, signed by junta chief Min Aung Hlaing on March 25, is for law enforcement personnel to “take part in the state’s defence and security affairs when necessary.”
 

NEPAL

'Government committed to press freedom'
The Himalayan Times | 30th March
Minister of Communications and Information Technology Gyanendra Bahadur Karki has said the incumbent government is committed to press freedom and freedom of expression.
At a programme on 'Impact of COVID-19 on journalists and media' organised on the occasion of 67th anniversary of Federation of Nepali Journalists here today, Minister Karki said that democracy and press freedom were integral. Urging the media sector to play an active role to institutionalise democracy and strengthen it, he lauded the role played by the overall sector of journalism to establish democratic federal republic and during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nepal Covid-19 tally: 25 new cases, 89 recoveries, 0 deaths in 24 hours
Onelinekhabar | 30th March
The Ministry of Health and Population has informed that Nepal’s Covid-19 tally has reached 1,118,559 as of Wednesday afternoon.
The ministry said 25 new cases were confirmed in the country in the past 24 hours.
In this period, 3,623 swab samples were tested in the RT-PCR method, of which returned 24 returned positive. Likewise, 1,328 underwent antigen tests for the virus, of which an additional one tested positive.

Government approves several proposals put forth by China
Himalayan Times | 29th March
The government has decided to approve the grant assistance and technical assistance related to the feasibility study for trans-border railway to be received under the Economic and Technical Cooperation Agreement proposed by the government of the People's Republic of China.
Government Spokesperson and Minister of Communications and Information Technology informed about this during the news conference organised today at the ministry while making public the decisions of a meeting of the Council of Ministers on March 28.

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