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Pakistan rejects report on fastest growing nuclear arsenal

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Islamabad: Pakistan on Friday strongly rejected a report published by a US think tank, which claimed that Pakistan has the fastest growing nuclear arsenal in the world. “The report is utterly baseless,” said Qazi Khalilullah, the foreign office spokesperson, Dawn reported. “Such reports have the effect of diverting attention from the exponential increase in India’s fissile material stockpiles,” added the spokesperson. The spokesman stated that as a nuclear state, Pakistan’s policy is characterized by utmost restraint and responsibility.

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“Pakistan strictly abides by the concept of credible minimum deterrence and our nuclear program is only aimed at maintaining peace and stability in South Asia. Pakistan has no desire to engage in nuclear arms race,” stated Khalilullah. It was also said that Pakistan remains committed to the global objective of disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation. Pakistan has put forward several initiatives to promote conventional and strategic stability in South Asia, including the proposed Strategic Restraint Regime but India has failed to respond positively towards Pakistani initiatives, according the spokesperson.

Earlier, the Washington Post reported that Pakistan could become the third largest nuclear stock pile within the next five to ten years, behind only the US and Russia, quoting reports published by two American think tanks. The report published by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the Stimson Center, said that Pakistan, out of its fear of India, was far outpacing its rival neighbour in the development of nuclear warheads and may be building 20 nuclear warheads annually.

(IANS)

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US, Britain Step Up In Order to Tackle Female Genital Mutilation

The mutilation of girls’ external genitals for non-medical reasons is practiced across Africa, the Middle East and Asia. It also affects immigrant communities in Europe and the U.S.

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Female Genital Mutilation
A badge reads "The power of labor against FGM" is seen on a volunteer during a conference on International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in Cairo, Egypt, Feb. 6, 2018. (VOA)

Authorities in the U.S. and Britain are stepping up cooperation to tackle female genital mutilation, staging joint operations at airports in London, New York and elsewhere to raise awareness of an issue that affects millions of girls and women worldwide.

Police and border security agencies on both sides of the Atlantic have signed a new agreement to share intelligence about when and where victims may be taken for the procedure, known as FGM, and help identify perpetrators.

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In the past week, officials also targeted travel hubs including Heathrow, JKF airport and Eurostar stations, approaching people traveling from countries where the practice is common and encouraging them to report any concerns.

The mutilation of girls’ external genitals for non-medical reasons is practiced across Africa, the Middle East and Asia. It also affects immigrant communities in Europe and the U.S. (VOA)

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