With eye on India, Pakistan strengthens military ties with Iran

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani (R) met visiting Pakistani COAS General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Tehran, Nov 19, 2019 The low-key coverage by the Pakistani media on the 2-day visit of the army chief General Qamar Bajwa to Iran notwithstanding, the event signifies a surge in the tempo of ‘mil-to-mil’ exchanges between the two countries.  The Iranian …

Tehran loses patience with Modi government’s hide and seek

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif received a group of Indian writers and journalists, Tehran, Nov 10, 2019 Historically speaking, India-Iran relationship had its ups and downs during the decades under Shah’s rule. The Lowest point was reached when during the 1965 and 1971 wars with India, Pakistani Air Force jets were stationed in Iran …

The return of the ‘strongman’ in Sri Lanka

Winner takes it all: Gotabaya Rajapaksa storms to power in the Sri Lankan presidential election on Nov 17, 2019 The thumping victory of Gotabaya Rajapaksa in the Sri Lankan presidential election on Saturday, trouncing his nearest rival Sajith Premadasa by a margin of over 1.3 million votes — 52.25 percent of votes polled against 41.99 …

Russia-Ukraine relations take leap of faith

Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) and Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky (L) to have first face-to-face encounter in Paris on December 9, 2019  The relationship of the famous Ukrainian oligarch and billionaire Ihor Valeriyovych Kolomoyskyi with President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky lends itself to various interpretations. Both Kolomoyskyi and Zelensky (rather, his spokesperson Iuliia Mendel) are …

Tehran taunts US with Fordow; pokes at Trump with Agent Levinson

Satellite imagery of Iran’s underground Fordow uranium enrichment facility north of the city of Qom Tehran announced on November 7 that it has begun refining uranium at Fordow, a secretive site built inside a mountain to the north of the holy city of Qom, apparently to protect it from any aerial bombardment, and one that …

The endgame begins in Yemen’s war

Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman and AbuDahbi Crown prince Mohammed bin Zayed witness the signing of the Riyadh Agreement between the Yemeni government and the Southern Transitional Council, Riyadh, November 5, 2019  The power-sharing agreement signed in Riyadh on November 5 between the Saudi-backed Yemeni government headed by Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi and UAE-backed southern …

Expectant hush in Delhi as Sri Lanka chooses president

Top presidential candidates Sajith Premadasa (L) and  candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa (R) greeted each other at a chance encounter in Colombo, October 7, 2019   An engrossing presidential election is due to take place in Sri Lanka on November 16. Considering that this is the first major election in Sri Lanka following the ‘regime change’ in …