New Details Revealed on bin Laden’s Hideout, US and India Sign Defense Deals of $8 Billion | April 23 – 27, 2012
Life moves fast. News moves faster. This week, new details around Osama bin Laden’s Abbottabad hideout were revealed on the anniversary of his death. The United States and India prepared to sign $8 billion defense deals, while Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani refused to step down after the Supreme Court found him guilty of contempt.
OBL’s last stand. On the anniversary of Osama bin Laden’s death, the TIME cover story focused on a detailed account of the deceased Al-Qaeda founder’s final days. Previously unpublished details revealed the third floor on which bin Laden lived in seclusion wasn’t supposed to exist at all according to the compound’s original blueprints. A team of Navy SEALs assassinated the terrorist leader one year ago, following a directive from President Barack Obama after a 10-year search. (TIME)
US-India bilateral boost. The United States and India are set to sign defense deals totaling $8 billion, per a public speech by US Ambassador Nancy Powell on Friday. The ambassador did not get into details on which companies would partake in the deals and when, but she announced the deals would be comprised of direct commercial and foreign military sales. India plans to spend close to $100 billion to upgrade its military equipment over the next 10 years. (Times of India)
Gilani holds court. Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said he will not step down, despite the Supreme Court’s ruling that he is guilty of contempt for not reporting corruption cases against President Asif Ali Zardari. The court handed Gilani a symbolic sentence of less than a minute’s detention, although he originally faced up to six months of jail time. Gilani maintained that he has legal immunity as prime minister. (Voice of America)
India’s rich-poor divide. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon praised India’s economic progress but express concerns over “serious disparities between rich and poor”. The unequal distribution of income and wealth has been a longstanding problem in the subcontinent, and Ki-moon expressed concern over the fact that much of the population lacks access to basic services. The UN chief met with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday to discuss a range of regional and security issues. (BBC)
Bangladesh’s missing person problem. Human Rights Watch called on Bangladesh to issue in independent inquiry into the disappearance of an increasing number of politicians. The New York-based human rights group pointed to information from local Bangladeshi organizations asserting that as many as 50 people have disappeared since 2010. Most recently, the country’s opposition forces imposed a three-day nationwide general strike to protest the disappearance of its opposition leader. (NY Daily News)
Sabrina Siddiqui is the editor-in-chief of Divanee.com.