Apr 022016

Bahrain’s foreign minister said on Friday that Gulf Arab states were prepared to confront Iran over its foreign policy and Tehran should drop its support for Middle East factions. Sheikh Khaled bin Ahmed al-Khalifa also played down any difference with the United States over remarks by US President Barack Obama last month telling Saudi Arabia and Iran “to find an effective way to share the neighbourhood”. Ties between Bahrain and Washington remained strong, he said. Bahrain cut diplomatic relations with Iran in January, one day after Saudi Arabia severed ties with the Islamic Republic following attacks by demonstrators on its diplomatic missions in Tehran and Mashhad in response to Saudi Arabia’s execution of a prominent Shi’ite Muslim cleric. “We send a message to Iran and to all its followers. We are now serious about confronting it and we have no hesitation to defend our people, states, interests and brothers in the region because this is a vital issue for us,” Sheikh Khaled said in an interview with the Dubai-based al-Arabiya channel. Bahrain accuses Iran of fomenting unrest in the country and of supplying weapons to Shia militants behind several bomb attacks on security forces. Iran denies the charges. Sheikh Khaled said Bahrain and other Gulf Arab states were ready to turn a new page with Iran if it changed its policies. “The main step is that Iran must completely change its foreign policy towards the countries of the region,” he said. This included Iran dropping its support for the Lebanese [Read More…]

Mar 202014
Pakistan not sending troops to Bahrain, Saudia: PM
  • Nawaz says no compromise on defence, assures provision of resources to defence forces
  • Pays tribute to air commodore (r) MM Alam at PAF airbase rechristening

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday dispelled the impression that Pakistan was sending its troops to Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, saying that no one has asked Pakistan to send its military.

In response to a question by media representatives after a ceremony at the MM Alam Airbase in Mianwali, the premier said that Pakistan was not sending its forces to either of the countries and neither had it been approached to do so.

The premier said that the Bahraini king’s visit to Pakistan was beneficial to the country and should be viewed as such, adding that the country was faced with multiple challenges and timely decisions needed to be made.

Nawaz said that the recent visit of Saudi crown prince also reflected that Pakistan’s foreign policy was progressing in the right direction. He hoped these visits will go a long way in further strengthening Pakistan’s ties with Muslim countries.

Earlier, speaking at the ceremony held for renaming PAF base as MM Alam Base, the prime minister said that Pakistan had no aggressive designs but also could not compromise on its defence and sovereignty. He added that Pakistan was a peace-loving country and believed in peaceful coexistence with its neighbours. Only a stable and strong Pakistan could guarantee peace and stability in the region, he added.

Moreover, the prime minister assured the provision of all necessary resources to defence forces for country’s protection.

Paying tribute to late MM Alam, the prime minister said that every Pakistani wanted to follow in his footsteps to revive the glory of Islam and make Pakistan a successful country.

The prime minister said that Pakistan Air Force was fully capable of defending the Pakistani territory. He said PAF had made significant efforts to improve its capabilities and the production of JF-17 Thunder was one of its best examples. He hoped that PAF will continue to bring in further improvement in various sections.

Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Information Minister Pervez Rashid, Air Chief Tahir Rafique Butt and siblings of air commodore (r) Muhammad Mahmood Alam Khan were also present on the occasion.

MM Alam, a veteran of the 1965 and 1971 wars, had passed away in a hospital in Karachi in March 2013 after a prolonged illness.

Mar 192014
Pakistan, Bahrain sign agreement on human development

ISLAMABAD- Pakistan and Bahrain have signed human resource development and vocational training agreement. According to the agreement, Bahrain will give vocational training to Pakistani labour, which will result in increase export of Pakistan manpower to Bahrain. It will lead to boost the foreign remittances of the country. Agreement was signed by Prime Minister’s Advisor for Foreign Affairs … Click for detailed story

Mar 022014
Formula one: Bahrain circuit honours Schumacher


Seven times world champion Michael Schumacher, still in a coma in a French hospital after a skiing accident in late December, is to have the first corner of Bahrain’s Formula One circuit named after him.

“From his first appearance in 2004, he immediately became an inspiration for all those who love motorsport in the Kingdom and it is therefore natural for us to recognise him in this way,” Bahrain International Circuit chairman Zayed al Zayani said in a statement on Sunday.

The German legend won the inaugural Bahrain race in 2004 and also advised on the design of the Formula One circuit.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 3rd, 2014.

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