Audio Overview of South Asia Issues, Friday, 18 January 2019

APAC Assistance Director Paul Quaglia discusses Main Issues in South Asia

Main Issues in South Asia

Firstly in INDIA

  • The ruling Trinamool (tri-na-mool) Congress party in the eastern state of West Bengal will conduct a political rally tomorrow. The rally will be held at the Brigade Parade ground in Kolkata. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee (banner-jee) will be leading the rally. Prominent politicians of several regional political parties of southern and eastern states are expected to attend the rally.
  • The rally is part of the campaign for the general elections in April 2019 which coincides with the state elections in West Bengal. The congregation of politicians from regional parties is reportedly an attempt to form an alliance of regional parties to fight the ruling Bharatiya (ba-ra-ti-ya) Janata Party in the general elections.
  • Clients are advised to avoid the Brigade Parade ground area tomorrow. Expect deployment of security personnel and police cordons in the area.


  • The Bangladesh Awami League party will be holding rally at the Suhrawardy Udyan ground in Dhaka tomorrow. The party is organizing the rally to celebrate their victory in the general elections held on December 31.
  • Prime Minister Sheik Hasina is expected to attend the rally. She was elected as the Prime Minister for the third consecutive term. The rally is likely to draw a large crowd of the party supporters.
  • Clients are advised to avoid the Suhrawardy Udyan area in Dhaka tomorrow. Follow the directions of the police to avoid traffic congestion in the area.


Main Issues in East Asia Pacific

Firstly in MALAYSIA

  • Five people were detained with drugs worth USD 49,000 near Jalan Tun Sambanthan in the Brickfields area of Kuala Lumpur this week. The suspects are alleged members of a secret society,
  • Over 4 kgs of drugs were found in their car along with a large amount of cash and Two vehicles belonging to the group were also seized. The police said that the groups started drug trafficking two months ago to finance their secret society group called Gang 08 and obtained all their drug supply at Bukit Tinggi in Pahang.
  • Clients are advised to be aware of the threat posed by gangs involved in drug trafficking in Malaysia.


  • The Papua New Guinea Defence Force is reportedly planning to increase active personnel to 10,000 this year from 4000. Commander Major General Gilbert Toropo said that it is one of the force‚Äôs main aims for the year to improve the security and also to establish more posts along the border with Indonesia.
  • He said that the armed forces will continue their deployment in Hela, Southern Highlands and Enga provinces due to the poor law and order situation.
  • Clients are advised to avoid nonessential travel to Hela, Southern Highlands, and Enga province. Employ extreme caution in the region.


  • Yesterday a rescued Indonesian hostage was turned over to representatives of the Indonesian government. The hostage was rescued by the military from the Abu Sayyaf terror group on Wednesday this week. The hostage was kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf last September. The hostage was rescued in the Panamao town on Sulu island in the southern
  • A Dutch national, a Vietnamese, two Indonesians and four Filipinos are still held hostage by the Abu Sayyaf.
  • Clients are advised to be employ extreme caution in the southern islands of the Philippines and be aware of the threat of kidnapping by insurgent groups active in the region. Monitor alerts and advisories from APAC Assistance for further updates.
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