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Defense deal between Pakistan and Russia

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Islamabad: In a defense deal signed between Pakistan and Russia, four Mi-35 ‘Hind E’ attack helicopters were sold to Pakistan. Both the countries, which have been rivals from the Cold War, have been negotiating this deal for the past year, indicating mending relations between the two nations.

“The agreement was signed by top defense officials from Pakistan and Russia in Rawalpindi on Wednesday,” Dawn cited a military source as saying.

Photo credit: www.dawn.com
Photo credit: www.dawn.com

The Mi-35 helicopter is an exceedingly modified version of the Mi-24 combat attack helicopter. It boasts of new onboard equipment and avionics, a more powerful engine and a different tail rotor.

Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif paid a visit to Russia in June, after which a draft contract was sent to Pakistan from Russia, for the delivery of four Mi-35M ‘Hind E’ combat helicopters. The General had spent about 15 hours at an arms expo featuring Russia’s cutting-edge weapons and military equipment.

Late last year, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu visited Pakistan to discuss bilateral defense cooperation with the Pakistani leadership.

Sergey Chemezov, CEO of Russia’s Rostec corporation, had said Russia had lifted its ban on delivery of military hardware and armaments to Pakistan and negotiations were underway  on delivering helicopters.

Pakistan already has a number of ‘Mi-17’ helicopters delivered by US to assist in the fight against militancy.

With inputs from IANS

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Twitter bans Russia-based Kaspersky Lab from buying ads

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Twitter bans Russia-based Kaspersky Lab from buying ads. Pixabay

Twitter has banned Russia-based cyber security firm Kaspersky Lab from advertising on its platform, stating that the company “operates using a business model that inherently conflicts with acceptable Twitter Ads business practices.”

In an open letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, Kaspersky Lab’s Founder Eugene Kaspersky has termed the move as “potential political censorship”.

Twitter icon.
Twitter bans ads. Pixabay

“At the end of January, Twitter unexpectedly informed us about an advertising ban on our official accounts where we announce new posts on our various blogs on cybersecurity (including, for example, Securelist and Kaspersky Daily) and inform users about new cyberthreats and what to do about them,” Eugene wrote on Friday.

“In a short letter from an unnamed Twitter employee, we were told that our company ‘operates using a business model that inherently conflicts with acceptable Twitter Ads business practices,'” he added.

Kaspersky Lab spent around $93,000 to promote its content on Twitter in 2017 and its India advertising share on Twitter was around $13,580.

“No matter how this situation develops, we won’t be doing any more advertising on Twitter this year. “The whole of the planned Twitter advertising budget for 2018 will instead be donated to the @EFF. They do a lot to fight censorship online,” Eugene tweeted on Saturday.

According to a report in Cyberscoop, a Twitter spokesperson pointed towards the September 2017 decree from US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that ordered federal agencies to remove Kaspersky products from their networks.

Also Read: New algorithm may help locate fake Facebook and Twitter accounts

“Kaspersky Lab may remain an organic user on our platform, in accordance with the Twitter Rules,” a Twitter spokesperson told The Register. “Twitter is playing into the hands of cybercriminals when it hinders the delivery of important information on protection from cyberthreats,” Eugene said.

“The majority of our promoted content on Twitter has been about cybersafety and research and reports about the information security industry. We believe that this content brings value to a variety of Twitter users.”

“Twitter, if this is a matter of a decision being made in error, please openly admit this; people’d forgive you – everyone makes mistakes! I think that would be the only civilized way to quash any doubts about potential political censorship on Twitter,” Eugene said.

Twitter to soon release Snapchat like feature. VOA
Fake accounts on Twitter are many. VOA

The Kaspersky Lab founder said that more than two months have passed and the only reply he received from Twitter was the copy of the same boilerplate text.

“Accordingly, I’m forced to rely on another (less subtle but nevertheless oft and loudly declared) principle of Twitter’s – speaking truth to power – to share details of the matter with interested users and to publicly ask that you, dear Twitter executives, kindly be specific as to the reasoning behind this ban,” he said. IANS

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