Pakistan National Assembly Passes Draconian “Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill 2015”

Dark webVirtual Crime, Real Time: Pakistan Approves Controversial Cybercrime Bill

 

Will online “terrorism,” “hacking,” and “child pornography” be equated to “sending text messages without notifying the receiver” and “criticizing government actions on social media” in Pakistan?

The controversial “Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill 2015” has been approved by Pakistan’s National Assembly (NA) on Wednesday—

Government’s Proposed And Modified Cybercrime Bill 2015

1.
Short title, extent, application and commencement
.

(1) This Act may be called
the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act, 2015.
(2) It extends to the whole of Pakistan.
(3) It shall also
apply to every citizen wherever he may be, and to every other person
for the time being in Pakistan.
(4) It shall come into force at once.
2.
Definitions
.

(1) In this Act, unless there is anything repugnant in the subject or
context,

a.
“access
to  information  system”  means  gaining  control  or  right  to  use  to  the
whole  or  any  part  of  an  information  system
whether  or  not  through  infringing  any
security measure;
b.
“access  to  data”  means  gaining  control  or  right  to  read,  use,  copy,  modify  or
delete any data held in or generated by any device or information system;
c.

Authority”  means  Pakistan  Telecommunication  Authority  established  under
Pakistan  Telecommunication  (Re

organization)  Act,  1996  (Act  No.XVII  of
1996);
d.
“authorization”  includes  authorization  by  law  or  the  person  empowered  to
make such authorization;
e.
“authorized  officer”  means  an  officer  of  the  special  investigation  agency
authorized  to  perform  any  function  on  behalf  of  the  special  investigation
agency under this Act;
f.
“Code” means the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898 (Act No.V of 1898);
g.
“content data” means any representation of facts, information or concepts in a
form  suitable  for  processing  in  an  information  system,
including  source  code
or a program suitable to cause an information system to perform a function;
h.
“Court”  means  the  Court  of  competent  jurisdiction  designated
to
try
offences
specified under
this
Act;
i.
“critical  infrastructure”  includes  the  infrastructures  so  designated  by  any
Government in Pakistan and
such other assets, systems and networks, whether
physical or virtual, so vital to the State or its organs including judicature that
their  incapacitation  or  destruction  may  have  a  debilitating  effect  on  national
security, economy, public health,safety or m
atters related thereto;
Obtained    by    Bolo    Bhi
j.
“critical  infrastructure  information  system  or  data”  means  any  information
system, program or data that supports or performs a function with respect to a
critical infrastructure;
k.
“damage
to  an  information  system”  includes  any  change  in  the  ordinary
working of an information system impairing its performance, access, output or
change  in  location  whether  temporary  or  permanent  and  with  or  without
causing any change in the information system
itself;
l.
“data” includes content data and traffic data;
m.

data  damage”
includes  altering,  deleting,  deterioration,  erasing,  suppressing,
changing   location   of   data   or   making   data   temporarily   or   permanently
unavailable;
n.
“device”  includes  any  physical
device  or  virtual  device  capable  of  being
connected with any information system;
o.
“electronic”    includes    electrical,    digital,    magnetic,    optical,    biometric,
electrochemical, wireless or electromagnetic technology;
p.
“identity  information”  means  any  information  which  may  authenticate  or
identify an individual or an information system and enable access to any data
or information system;
q.
“information”  includes  text,  message,  data,  voice,  sound,  database,  video,
signals, software, computer programs, codes includ
ing object code and source
code;
r.
“information  system”  means  an  electronic  system  for  creating,  generating,
sending,  receiving,  storing,  reproducing,  displaying,  recording  or  processing
information;
s.
“intelligence”  means  any  speech,  sound,  data,  signal,
writing,  image  or
video;“investigating  officer”  means  an  officer  of  the  special  investigation
agency designated for investigation of offences under this Act;
t.
“offence” means an offence punishable under this Act;
u.
“references” (i) to an “act” includes a series of acts;
(ii)  to  an  act  by  a  “person”  shall  include  acts  done  or  to  be  done  by  such
person  either  directly  or  through  an  automated  information  system  or  device
and whether having temporary or permanent impact;
(iii)  a
reference  to  doing  an  act  includes  a  reference  to  causing  an  act  to  be
done;
(iv)     a     reference     to     impairing,     damage,     interference,     preventing
or
hindering something includes a reference to doing so temporarily;
v.
“rules” means rules made under this Act;
Obtained    by    Bolo    Bhi
w.
“seize” with respect to information system or data includes taking possession
of  such  information  system  or  data  or  making  and  retaining  a  copy  of  such
information system or data;
x.
“service provider” includes

i.
a person acting as a service provider in relation to sending, receiving, storing,
processing  or  distribution  of  electronic  communication  or  the  provision  of  other
services in relation to electronic communication through any information system;
ii.
a person who owns, possesse
s, operates, manages or controls a public
switched network or provides telecommunication services;
iii.
any  other  person  who  processes  or  stores  data  on  behalf  of  such
electronic communication service or users of such service; or
iv.
any
person  who  provides  premises  from  where  or  facilities  through
which  the  public  in  general  may  access  information  systems  and  the
internet such as cyber cafes;
y.
“special investigation agency” means the law enforcement agency established
or designated under
this Act;
z.
“subscriber information” means any information held in any form by a service
provider relating to a subscriber other than traffic data;
aa.
“traffic data” means any data relating to a communication indicating its origin,
destination, route, time,
size, duration or type of service;
bb.
“unauthorized access” means access to an information system or data without
authorisation or in violation of the terms and conditions of the authorization;
cc.
“unauthorised interception” shall mean in relation to an inf
ormation system or
data, any interception without authorization;
(3) Other expressions used in the Act or rules framed under it but not defined herein,
unless their context provides otherwise, shall have meanings assigned to the
expressions in the Pakist
an Penal Code 1860, Code of Criminal Procedure 1898 and
‘Qanoon

e

Shahadat Order 1984, as the case may be.
CHAPTER I
OFFENCES AND PUNISHMENTS
3.
Unauthorized   access   to   information   system   or   data
.

(1)   Whoever   with
malicious intent
gains unauthorized access to any information system or data shall be
punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months or with fine
which may extend to one hundred thousand rupees or with both.
4.  Unauthorized  copying  or  transmission
of  data.

Whoever
with
malicious  intent
and  without  authorization  copies  or  otherwise  transmits  or  causes  to  be  transmitted,
Obtained    by    Bolo    Bhi
any data whether by gaining access to such data or otherwise, shall be punished with
imprisonment  for  a  term  which  may  extend  to  si
x  months,  or  with  fine  which  may
extend to one hundred thousand rupess or with both.
5.  Unauthorized  access  to  critical  infrastructure  information  system  or  data.

Whoever with
malicious intent
gains unauthorized access to any critical infrastructure
information  system  or  data  shall  be  punished  with  imprisonment  upto  three  years  or
with fine which may extend to one million rupees or with both.
6.
Criminal
Interference   with   information   system   or   data
.

Whoever   with
malicious intent and without authorization interferes with or damages or causes to be
interfered with or damaged any information system or any part thereof, or data or any
part thereof, shall be punished with imprisonment which may extend to two years or
with fine which may extend to five hundred
thousand rupees or with both.
Explanation:  Interference  refers  to  doing  of  any  unauthorized  act  in  relation  to  an
information  system  or  data  that  may  disturb  normal  working  of  such  information
system with or without causing any actual damage to such info
rmation system.
7. Criminal
Interference with critical infrastructure information system or data
.

Whoever with malicious intent and without authorization interferes with or damages,
or causes to be inferred with or damaged, any critical information system or any part
thereof,  or  critical  infrastructure  data  or  any  part  thereof,  shall  be  punished  with
imprisonment which may extend to seven years or with fine which may extend to five
million rupees or with both.
8.
Cyber  terrorism
.

Whoever  commits  or  threatens  to  commit  any  of  the  offences
under sections 5 and 7 where

(a)  the  use  or  threat  is  designed  to  coerce,  intimidate,  overawe  or  create  a  sense  of
fear, panic or insecurity in the Government or the public or a section of the public or
community or sect or create a sense of fear or insecurity in society; or
(b) the use or threat is made for the purpose or motive of advancing a religious, ethnic
or sectarian cause;
shall  be  punished  with  imprisonment  of  either  description
for  a  term  which  may
extend to fourteen years or with fine which may extend to fifty million rupees or with
both.
9.
Electronic   forgery
.

(1)   Whoever,   for   wrongful   gain,   interferes   with   any
information system, device or data, with intent to cause damage or injury to the public
or  to  any  person,  or  to  make  any  illegal  claim  or  title  or  to  cause  any  person  to  part
with  property  or  to  enter  into  any  express  or  implied  contract,  or  with  intent  to
commit  fraud  by  any  input,  alteration,  deletion,  or  suppressi
on  of  data,  resulting  in
unauthentic data with the intent that it be considered or acted upon for legal purposes
Obtained    by    Bolo    Bhi
as  if  it  were  authentic,  regardless  of  the  fact  that  the  data  is  directly  readable  and
intelligible or not shall be punished with imprisonment
of either description for a term
which  may  extend  to  two  years,  or  with  fine  which  may  extend  to  two  hundred  and
fifty thousand rupees or with both.
(2)   Whoever   commits   offence   under   sub

section   (1)   in   relation   to   a   critical
infrastructure  information  system  or  data  shall  be  punished  with  imprisonment  for  a
term  which  may  extend  to  five  years  or  with  fine  which  may  extend  to  five  million
rupees or with both.
10.
Electronic  fraud
.

Whoever  for  wrongful  gain  interferes  with  or  uses  any
information  system,  device  or  data  or  induces  any  person  to  enter  into  a  relationship
or with intent to deceive any person, which act or omission is likely to cause damage
or harm to that person or any other person shall be punished with imprisonment for a
term  which  may  extent  to  two  years  or  with  fine  which  may  extend  to  ten  million
rupess, or with both.
11.
Making, supplying or obtaining devices for use in offence
.

Whoever produces,
makes,  generates,  adapts,  exports,  supplies,  offers  to  supply  or  imports  for  use  any
information system, data or device intending it primarily to be used or believing that it
is primarily to be used to commit or to assist in the commission of an offence under
this Act shall, without prejudice to any other liability that he may incur in this behalf,
be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 6 months or with fine
which may extend to fifty thousand rupees or with both.
12.
Identity  crime
.

(1)  Whoever  obtains,  sells,  possesses  or  transmits  another
person’s  identity  information,  without  lawful  justification  shall  be  punished  with
imprisonment  for  a  term  which  may  extend  to  three  months  or  with  fine  which  may
extend to fifty
thousand rupees, or with both.
(2) Any person whose identity information is obtained, sold, possessed or retains may
apply to the Court competent to try offence under sub

section (1) for passing of such
others  as  the  Court  may  deem  fit  in  the  circumstances  for  securing,  destruction  or
preventing transmission of any such data.
13.  Unauthroized  issuance  of  SIM  cards  etc.

Whoever
sells  or  otherwise  provide
subscriber  identity  module  (SIM)  card,  re

usable  identification  module  (R

IUM)  or
other portable memory chip designed to be used in cellular mobile or wireless phone
for transmitting and receiving of intelligence without obtaining and verification of the
subscriber’s antecedents in the mode and manner approved by the Authority shall be
punished with impr
isonment for
a term which may extend to three years or with fine
which may extend to five hundred thousand rupees or both.
14.   Tempering   etc.   of   communication   equipment.

Whoever   changes,   alters,
tampers  with  or  re

programs  unique  device  identifier  or  international  mobile  station
equipment  identity  (IMEI)  number  of  any  stolen  cellular  or  wireless  handset  and
unlawfully  or  without  authorization  starts  using  or  marketing  it  for  transmitting  and
receiving  intelligence  through  such  mobile  or  wireless  handsets
shall  be  punished
with imprisonment which may extend to three years or with fine which may extend to
1 million rupees or both.
Obtained    by    Bolo    Bhi
15.
Unauthorized   interception
.

Whoever   intentionally   commits   unauthorized
interception by technical means of

(a) any transmission that is not intended to be and is not open to the public, from or
within an information system; or
(b) electromagnetic emissions from an information system that are carrying data,
shall
be  punished  with  imprisonment  of  either  description  for  a  term  which  may
extend to two years or with fine which may extend to five hundred thousand rupees or
with both:
16
. Offence against dignity of natural person

(1) Whoever, with malicious intent,
k
nowingly  and  publicly  exhibits,  displays,  transmits  any  electronic  communication
that  harms  the  reputation  of  a  natural  person,  threatens  any  sexual  acts  against  a
natural  person;  superimposes  a  photograph  of  the  face  of  a  natural  person  over  any
sexually
explicit   images;   distorts   the   face   of   a   natural   person;   or   includes   a
photograph  or  a  video  of  a  natural  person  in  sexually  explicit  conduct,  without  the
express  or  implied  consent  of  the  person  in  question,  intending  that  such  electronic
communication  cause  that  person  injury  or  threatens  injury  to  his  or  her  reputation,
his or her existing state of privacy or puts him or her in fear for him or her safety shall
be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year or with fine
which may ext
end to one million rupees or with both.
(2) Whoever commits an offence under sub

section (1) with respect to a minor, shall
be  punished  with  imprisonment  for  a  term  which  may  extend  to  three  years,  or  with
fine which may extend to ten million rupees or w
ith both.
(3) Any aggrieved person or his guardian where such person is a minor, may apply to
the  court  for  passing  of  such  orders  for  removal,  destruction  or  blocking  access  to
such material referred in sub

section (1) and the Court on receipt of such application
may pass such orders as deemed proper in the circumstances.
17. Malicious code.

Whoever wilfully writes, offers, makes available, distributes or
transmits  malicious  code  through  an  information  system  or  device,  with  intent  to
cause harm to any
information system or data resulting in the corruption, destruction,
alteration,  suppression,  theft  or  loss  of  information  system  or  data  shall  be  punished
with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years or with fine which may
extend to one
million rupees or both:
Provided  that  the  provision  of  this  section  shall  not  apply  to  the  authorized  testing,
research and development or protection of any code for any lawful purpose:
Explanation.

For  the  purpose  of  this  section  the  expression  “malicious
code”
includes  a  computer  program  or  a  hidden  function  in  a  program  that  damages  any
information  system  or  data  or  compromises  the  performance  of  the  information
system or availability of data or uses the information system resources without proper
authorization
Obtained    by    Bolo    Bhi
18.  Cyber  stalking.

(1)  Whoever  with  intent  to  coerce,  intimidate,  or  harass  any
person  uses  information  system,  information  system  network,  internet,  website,
electronic mail or any other similar means of communication to,

(a) communicate
obscene, vulgar, contemptuous, or indecent intelligence;
(b) make any suggestion or proposal of an obscene nature;
(c) threaten any illegal or immoral act;
(d)  take  or  distribute  pictures  or  photographs  of  any  person  without  his
consent or knowledge
;
(e)  display  or  distribute  information  in  a  manner  that  substantially  increases
the risk of harm or violence to any other person
commits the offence of cyber stalking.
(2) Whoever commits the offence specified in sub

section (1) shall be punishable with
imprisonment  for  a  term  which  may  extend  to  two  years  or  with  fine  which  may
extend to one million rupees, or with both:
Provided  that  if  the  victim  of  the  cyber  stalking  under  sub

section  (1)  is  a  minor  the
punishment may extend to three years or with
fine may extend to ten million rupees,
or with both.
(3)  Any  person  may  apply  to  the  court  for  issuance  of  a  restraining  order  against  an
accused  of  cyber  stalking  and  the  court  upon  receipt  of  such  application  may  pass
such order as deemed appropriate in the circumstances of the case.
19.  Spamming.

(1)
Whoever  transmits  harmful,  fraudulent,  misleading,  illegal  or
unsolicited intelligence to any person without the express permission of the recipient,
or causes any information system to show any such intelligence commits the offence
of spamming.
(2)
Whoever  commits  the  offence  of  spamming  as  described  in  sub

section  (1)  shall
be punished with fine not exceeding fifty thousand rupees if he commits this offence
of  spamming  for  the  first  time  and  for  every  subsequent  commission  of  offence  of
spamming  he
shall  be  punished  with  imprisonment  for  a  term  which  may  extend  to
three months or with fine which may extend to one million rupees
or with both.
20.   Spoofing.

(1)   Whoever   dishonestly,   establishes   a   website   or   sends   any
intelligence  with  a  counterfeit
source  intended  to  be  believed  by  the  recipient  or
visitor of
the website, to be an authentic source commits spoofing.
(2) Whoever commits spoofing shall be punished with imprisonment for a tem which
may  extend  to  three  years,  or  with  fine  which  may  extend  to  five  hundred  thousand
rupees or with both.
Obtained    by    Bolo    Bhi
21.
Legal  recognition  of  offences  committed  in  relation  to  information  systems
.

(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law, an offence under this Act or
any  other  law  shall  not  be  denied  legal  recognition  and  enforcement  for  the  sole
reason  of  such  offence  being  committed  in  relation  to,  or  through  the  use  of,  an
information system.
(2)  References  to  “property”  in  any  law  creating  an  offence  in  relation  to  or
concerning property, shall include information systems and data.
(3) References in any law creating an offence to an act shall include actions taken or
caused by
use of an information system.
(4)  References  to  an  act  by  a  person  in  this  Act  or  any  law  establishing  an  offence
shall include acts done or to be done by or through automated mechanisms and self

executing, adaptive or autonomous devices, programs or in
formation systems.
22. Pakistan Penal Code 1860 to apply
.

The provisions of the Pakistan Penal Code
1860 (XLV of 1860), to the extent not inconsistent with anything provided in this Act,
shall apply to the offences provided in this Act.
CHAPTER II
ESTABLISHMENT OF INVESTIGATION AND PROSECUTION AGENCY
AND PROCEDURAL POWERS FOR INVESTIGATION
23.
Establishment  of  investigation  agencies  and  prosecution
.

(1)  The  Federal
Government  shall  designate  the
Federal  Investigation  Agency  or  any  other  law
enforce
ment   agency   as   the   special   investigation   agency   for   the   purposes   of
investigation and prosecution of offences under this Act.
(2) Unless otherwise provided for under this Act the special investigation agency, the
special investigating officer, prosecution
and the court shall in all matters
follow the
procedure  laid  down  in  the  Code
to  the  extent  that  it  is  not  inconsistent  with  any
provision of this Act.
(3)   The   Government   shall   organize   specialized   courses   in   digital   forensics,
information technology, com
puter science and other related matters for training of the
officers and staff of the special investigation agency.
24.
No  warrant,  arrest,  search,  seizure  or  other  power  not  provided  for  in  the
Act
.

(1) No person whether a police officer, investigation
officer or otherwise, other
than  an  investigating  officer  of  the  special  investigation  agency  shall  investigate  an
offence under this Act:
Provided that the Federal Government or the Provincial Government may, as the case
may  be,  constitute  joint  investi
gation  team  comprising  of  the  officers  of  special
investigation  agency  and  any  other  law  enforcement  agency  including  Police  for
Obtained    by    Bolo    Bhi
investigation of events involving commission of offences under this Act and any other
law for the time being in force.
(2) No
person other than a prosecutor designated as such by the special investigating
agency shall prosecute any offence under this Act.
25.
Expedited Preservation of data
.

(1) If an investigating officer is satisfied that

(a)  data
stored  in  any  information  system  or  by  means  of  an  information  system,  is
reasonably required for the purposes of a criminal investigation; and
(b)  there  is  a  risk  or  vulnerability  that  the  data  may  be  modified,  lost,  destroyed  or
rendered inaccessible,
the  investigating  officer  may,  by  written  notice  given  to  a  person  in  control  of  the
information  system,  require  the  person  to  ensure  that  the  data  specified  in  the  notice
be preserved and the integrity thereof is maintained for a period not exceeding n
inety
days as specified in the notice.
(2)  The  period  provided  in  sub

section  (1)  for  preservation  of  data  may  be  extended
by  the  Magistrate  if  so  deemed  necessary  upon  receipt  of  an  application  from  the
investigating officer in this behalf.
26.
Retention of traffic data.

(1)
A service provider shall, within its existing or
required  technical  capability,  retain  its  traffic  data  for  a  minimum  period  of  ninety
days  or  such  period  as  the  Authority  may  notify  from  time  to  time  and  provide  that
data
to  the  special  investigating  agency  or  the  investigating  officer  whenever  so
required.
(2)
The  service  providers  shall  retain  the  traffic  data  under  sub  section  (1)  by
fulfilling  all  the  requirements  of  data  retention  and  its  originality  as  provided  under
sections 5 and 6 of the Electronic Transaction Ordinance, 2002 (LI of 2002).
(3)
Any  person  who  contravenes  the  provisions  of  this  section  shall  be  punished
with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months or with fine which may
extend to or
with both.
27.
Warrant  for  search  or  seizure
.

(1)  Upon  an  application  by  an  investigating
officer  that  demonstrates  to  the  satisfaction  of  the  Court  that  there  exist  reasonable
grounds to believe that there may be in a specified place an information syste
m, data,
device or other articles that

(a) may reasonably be required for the purpose of a criminal investigation or criminal
proceedings  which  may  be  material  as  evidence  in  proving  a  specifically  identified
offence made out under this Act; or
(b) ha
s been acquired by a person as a result of the commission of an offence,

 

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4-star admiral wants to confront China. White House says not so fast

4-star admiral wants to confront China. White House says not so fast

navy times

 

The U.S. military’s top commander in the Pacific is arguing behind closed doors for a more confrontational approach to counter and reverse China’s strategic gains in the South China Sea, appeals that have met resistance from the White House at nearly every turn.

Adm. Harry Harris is proposing a muscular U.S. response to China’s island-building that may include launching aircraft and conducting military operations within 12 miles of these man-made islands, as part of an effort to stop what he has called the “Great Wall of Sand” before it extends within 140 miles from the Philippines’ capital, sources say.

Harris and his U.S. Pacific Command have been waging a persistent campaign in public and in private over the past several months to raise the profile of China’s land grab, accusing China outright in February of militarizing the South China Sea.

But the Obama administration, with just nine months left in office, is looking to work with China on a host of other issues from nuclear non-proliferation to an ambitious trade agenda, experts say, and would prefer not to rock the South China Sea boat, even going so far as to muzzle Harris and other military leaders in the run-up to a security summit.

“They want to get out of office with a minimum of fuss and a maximum of cooperation with China,” said Jerry Hendrix, a retired Navy captain and defense strategy analyst with the Center for a New American Security.

The White House has sought to tamp down on rhetoric from Harris and other military leaders, who are warning that China is consolidating its gains to solidify sovereignty claims to most of the South China Sea.

National Security Adviser Susan Rice imposed a gag order on military leaders over the disputed South China Sea in the weeks running up to the last week’s high-level nuclear summit, according to two defense officials who asked for anonymity to discuss policy deliberations. China’s president, Xi Jinping, attended the summit, held in Washington, and met privately with President Obama.

The order was part of the notes from a March 18 National Security Council meeting and included a request from Rice to avoid public comments on China’s recent actions in the South China Sea, said a defense official familiar with the meeting readout.

In issuing the gag order, Rice intended to give Presidents Obama and Xi Jinping “maximum political maneuvering space” during their one-on-one meeting during the global Nuclear Summit held March 31 through April 1, the official said.

“Sometimes it’s OK to talk about the facts and point out what China is doing, and other times it’s not,” the official familiar with the memo said.  “Meanwhile, the Chinese have been absolutely consistent in their messaging.”

The NSC dictum has had a “chilling effect” within the Pentagon that discouraged leaders from talking publicly about the South China Sea at all, even beyond the presidential summit, according to a second defense official familiar with operational planning. Push-back from the NSC has become normal in cases where it thinks leaders have crossed the line into baiting the Chinese into hard-line positions, sources said.

Military leaders interpreted this as an order to stay silent on China’s assertive moves to control most of the South China Sea, said both defense officials, prompting concern that the paltry U.S. response may embolden the Chinese and worry U.S. allies in the region, like Japan and the Philippines, who feel bullied.

China, which has been constructing islands and airstrips atop reefs and rocky outcroppings in the Spratly Islands, sees the South China Sea as Chinese territory. President Xi told Obama during their meeting at the nuclear summit that China would not accept any behavior in the disguise of freedom of navigation that violates its sovereignty, according to a Reuters report. The two world leaders did agree to work together on nuclear and cyber security issues.

Experts say administrations often direct military leaders to tone down their rhetoric ahead of major talks, but the current directive comes at a difficult juncture. U.S. leaders are struggling to find an effective approach to stopping the island-building without triggering a confrontation.

The NSC frequently takes top-down control to send a coherent message, said Bryan Clark a former senior aide to Adm. Jon Greenert, the recently retired chief of naval operations. While serving as Greenert’s aide, Clark said the NSC regularly vetted the former CNO’s statements on China and the South China Sea.

Critics say the administration’s wait-and-see approach to the South China Sea has failed, with the island-dredging continuing in full force.

“The White House’s aversion to risk has resulted in an indecisive policy that has failed to deter China’s pursuit of maritime hegemony while confusing and alarming our regional allies and partners,” said Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, in a statement to Navy Times. “China’s increasingly coercive challenge to the rules-based international order must be met with a determined response that demonstrates America’s resolve and reassures the region of our commitment.”

When presented with the findings of this article, Harris declined to comment through a spokesperson. A spokesman for the chief of naval operations had no comment when asked about Harris’ proposals and whether the CNO was supporting them.

An administration official said the Navy’s operations in the South China Sea are routine and that the administration often seeks to coordinate its message.

“While we’re not going to characterize the results of deliberative meetings, it’s no secret that we coordinate messaging across the inter-agency-on issues related to China as well as every other priority under the sun,” the official said.

The gag order has had at least one intended effect. The amphibious assault ship Boxer and the dock landing ship Harpers Ferry, both carrying the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit, steamed through the South China Sea in late March to little fanfare.

‘The status quo has changed’

Meanwhile evidence is mounting that China aims to build another island atop the Scarborough Shoal, an atoll just 140 miles off the coast of the Philippines’ capital of Manila and well within the Philippines’ 200-mile economic exclusion zone, that would extend China’s claims. Chinese missile batteries and air-search radars there would put U.S. forces in the Philippines at risk in a crisis.

Harris and PACOM officials have been lobbying the National Security Council, Capitol Hill and Pentagon leaders to send a clear message that they won’t tolerate continued bullying of neighbors. Part of the approach includes more aggressive, frequent and close patrols of China’s artificial islands, Navy Times has learned.

“When it comes to the South China Sea, I think the largest military concern for [U.S.] Pacific Command is what operational situation will be left to the next commander or the commander after that,” said a Senate staffer familiar with the issues in the South China Sea. “The status quo is clearly being changed. Militarization at Scarborough Shoal would give [China’s People’s Liberation Army-Navy] the ability to hold Subic Bay, Manila Bay, and the Luzon Strait at risk with coastal defense cruise missiles or track aviation assets moving in or out of the northern Philippines.”

The administration is negotiating rotational force presence in the Philippines that would put the U.S. in a position to counter China’s moves in the region but the focus on the big picture isn’t changing the China’s gains in the here and now, the staffer said.

“Force posture agreements and presence operations are important, but the administration has yet to develop a deterrence package that actually convinced Beijing that going further on some of these strategic-level issues like Scarborough … is not worth the costs.”

Stepped-up patrols and of the South China Sea like the one conducted by the carrier John C. Stennis and her escorts in early March are part of the PACOM response to China, but actual freedom of navigation patrols in close proximity to China’s islands must be authorized by the White House.

The patrols to date have been confusing, critics argue, because they have been conducted under the right of innocent passage. For example, the destroyer Lassen’s October transit within 12 nautical miles of Chinese man-made islands in the disputed Spratly Islands chain, was conducted in accordance with innocent passage rights. Some officials saw that as tacit acknowledgment that China did in fact own the islands and were entitled to a 12-mile territorial sea around them.

During innocent passage, warships are not supposed to fly aircraft, light off anti-air systems or shoot guns — just proceed expeditiously from point “A” to point “B.” All those activities are fair game in international waters.

The lack of a more aggressive response has only encouraged continued expansion, critics say, including the new Scarborough Shoal project, which China seized from the Philippines in 2012.

The Lassen was the first U.S. warship to pass within 12 miles of China’s man-made islands in three years and was followed by the destroyer Curtis Wilbur’s patrol of the disputed Paracel Islands in January. But if the goal of those patrols was to stop China from constructing man-made islands, it has clearly failed, which was noted last month by the U.S. military’s top officer.

“In the South China Sea, Chinese activity is destabilizing and could pose a threat to commercial trade routes,” Marine Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, said at a March 29 speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “And while our exercise of freedom of navigation provides some assurance to our allies and partners, it hasn’t stopped the Chinese from developing military capabilities in the South China Sea, to include on territories where there is a contested claim of sovereignty.”

Administration officials say they’ve been tough on China’s claims, supporting military patrols by U.S. Air Force bombers and Navy ships, as well as sending high-tech military assets to the region, including two more destroyers and the sophisticated X-band AN/TPY-2 missile defense radar system. The U.S. is also negotiating rotational presence for U.S. troops on bases in the Philippines, right on China’s doorstep.

“The idea that we are somehow inconsistent or that we are giving China a free pass just isn’t supported by the facts,” said a U.S. official who spoke on background to discuss internal deliberations.

‘Irreversible’ gains

Harris wants to double down on the close island patrols but conduct them on the assertion they are in international water, sources who spoke to Navy Times said.

Clark, now an analyst with the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments who has followed Harris’s strategy, said he thinks Harris is lobbying for more assertive freedom of navigation patrols that include military operations such as helicopter flights and signals intelligence within 12 miles of Chinese-claimed features. Such patrols, Clark said, would make clear the Navy does not acknowledge Chinese claims and that the surrounding waters are international.

“He wants to do real [freedom of navigation operations],” Clark said. “He wants to drive through an area and do military operations.”

Harris is not the only Navy expert raising alarms. Capt. Sean Liedman, a naval flight officer serving as a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, called for the U.S. to take a hard line.

“Failing to prevent the destruction and Chinese occupation of Scarborough Shoal would generate further irreversible environmental damage in the South China Sea — and more importantly, further irreversible damage to the principles of international law,” Liedman wrote in a late March blog post. “It would further consolidate the Chinese annexation and occupation of the maritime features in the South China Sea, which would be essentially irreversible in any scenario short of a major regional conflict.”

Liedman said the Navy should consider taking military actions like disabling Chinese dredging boats to steps to impair the land-reclamation effort.

Failing to stop China’s expansion in the South China Sea into territory also claimed by its neighbors is only heightening the chance of getting into an armed confrontation, said Hendrix, the retired captain.

“The Obama administration has tended to take the least confrontational path but in doing so they created an environment where it’s going to take a major shock to reestablish the international norms in the South China Sea,” he said. “Ironically, they’ve made a situation where conflict is more instead of less likely.”

NSA Declassified Doc. Reveal Pak ISI Funded Taliban (TTP) Bombing of CIA Drone Camp Chapman

[The US Govt has vested interests in prolonging the Afghan war for as long as possible, to serve as a Pentagon “lily pad” (launching pad) for projecting war into the Indian subcontinent, as well as Iran and Central Asia.  Afghanistan is typical of all of America’s recent wars, the Pentagon does NOT end wars, it only starts them.  To that end, the CIA has been practicing its black arts with other secret agencies, to destroy efforts at creating peace and development in the region, as a means of stopping the flow of gas and oil as much as possible, in order to aid American/Western oil interests.  Resource wars are not so much about obtaining new sources of scarce resources, as they are about blocking the harvest of scarce, new resources. 

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Everything is reversed in “CIA World.”
]

Pakistan’s ISI funded deadly attack on CIA camp in Afghanistan: US National Security Archive 

times of india

| TNN

  1. Pak funded the 2009 attack on a CIA camp on its border with Afghanistan. 7 American agents and contractors and three others were killed in attack
  2. The disclosure comes in declassified cable published by National Security Archive
  3. The attack was carried out by Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi, a Jordanian doctor and double agent.
200kPakistan’s ISI funded deadly attack on CIA camp in Afghanistan: US National Security Archive

 

WASHINGTON: Talk about biting the hand that feeds. Even as it bilked billions of dollars in aid from the United States, Pakistan is now revealed to have funded the 2009 attack on a CIA camp on its border with Afghanistan that killed seven American agents and contractors and three others.

The explosive disclosure comes in a declassified 2010 cable published by the national security archive, that, despite being redacted in parts, asserts unequivocally that “some funding for Haqqani attacks are still provided by the Pakistan Inter-Services Intelligence directorate, including $200,000 for the December 30, 2009, attack on the CIA facility at Camp Chapman.”

The Camp Chapman attack was carried out by

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Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi (and Hakeemullah Mehsud)

a Jordanian doctor and double agent, whom the CIA was trying to use to infiltrate al-Qaida in Pakistan in its hunt for Osama bin Laden and Ayman al Zawahiri. Instead, he was turned around the Haqqani group, a terrorist proxy for Pakistan’s intelligence agency.

Al-Balawi’s suicide attack on December 30, 2009 at the Camp Chapman forward post, which the CIA used to gather intelligence for drone attacks in Pakistan, killed ten people, including two female American CIA agents: Jennifer Lynne Matthews, 45, and a mother of three, who commanded the base, and Elizabeth Hanson, 30, a targeting analyst. The attack was memorialized in a movie titled Zero Dark Thirty.

While it has long been known that Pakistan’s terrorism sponsorship has claimed the lives of Indian and American civilians and military personnel, the revelations about bankrolling the Camp Chapman attack, kept secret from the public so far, is certain to inflame tensions between the two sides, particularly their military-intelligence outfits. Successive US administrations — particularly the state department led by John Kerry — have long ladled out pabulum that Pakistan is a front-line ally in the war on terror while funneling billions of dollars of aid, despite multiple terrorist attacks across the world originating from Pakistan, including in San Bernardino, New York, and London.

The timing of the attack and the sequence of cables detailing the ISI’s role in organizing the attack suggests that the US administration lied to the American public about Pakistan being a frontline ally in the way on terror even as it funneled $ 7.5 billion in US taxpayer money to a country’s whose military-intelligence establishment was killing American soldiers and spooks. Then senator John Kerry, who later became secretary of state, took the lead in presenting Pakistan as a worthy ally as he engineering with senator Lugar the Enhanced Partnership with Pakistan Act of 2009, which put $ 1.5 billion in US aid into the Pakistani coffers.

The Act, stemming from what is known as the Kerry-Lugar Bill was introduced to Congress on September 24, 2009, and passed into law on October 15, 2010. The ISI-sponsored attack on Camp Chapman occurred on December 30, 2009. By February 6, 2010, the date on the explosive cable detailing the Pakistani role, Washington knew ISI had engineered the attack on the CIA forward post.

“During discussions at an unknown date between Haqqani, Salar, and an unidentified ISID officer or officers, Haqqani and Salar were provided $200,000 to enable the attack on Chapman,” the cable relates in an unredacted portion. “Haqqani then provided the money to Salar who then communicated the planning details to Mullawi (Sakh). Sakh then contacted Arghawan Afghan border commander of the Khost Provincial Force.

The cable then goes on to say that Arghawan was promised $100,000 for facilitating the attack by the then unnamed Jordanian national (whose identity came to be known only later), but since Arghawan himself was killed in the attack, Salar kept the $100,000.

Which means, despite knowing Pakistan bankrolled the killing of its personnel, including two female agents who put their lives on line in a remote forward post, Washington still went ahead and rewarded Islamabad with billions of dollars in aid — and has continued to do so to this day with finance and armaments.

The Camp Chapman attack is counted as the second largest single-day loss in the CIA’s history, after the 1983 United States Embassy bombing in Beirut, Lebanon, which killed eight CIA officers.

Russian Su-24s Still Harassing USS Donald Cook, Now In Baltic

[The Real Buzz About the USS Donald Cook Incident In the Black Sea]

USS Donald CookRussia rejects complaints over simulated attacks by warplanes on US Navy destroyer

the independent

uss donald cook flyoverTwo Russian Su-24s buzzed past the destroyer in the Baltic (file photo) US Navy/Reuters

Russia has rejected complaints by US officials who claimed attack planes buzzed dangerously close to a Navy destroyer in the Baltic Sea. 

Two Russian warplanes repeatedly buzzed a US Navy destroyer in the Baltic Sea earlier this week in what American officials described as a “simulated attack”.

At one point, the Su-24 attack planes came so close to the ship – an estimated 30ft – that they created wakes in the water around it.

Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov, spokesman for the Russian defense ministry, said the pilots of Russian Su-24 jets saw the ship and turned back “while using all measures of precaution.” Konashenkov said he was baffled by what he described as the “distressed reaction of our American counterparts.”

The Russian planes appeared to be unarmed but did not respond to attempts to contact them by the crew of the USS Donald Cook.

He said the ship was operating in international waters 70 nautical miles off the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad. It had departed the Polish port of Gdynia on Monday.It is currently unclear whether the US government will formally protest to Russia. US Navy photographs of the incident have not been released.

On Monday, a pair of Russian Su-24 planes made 20 passes over the ship, coming as close as 1,000 yards at an altitude of about 100 ft.

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US officials say they regard it as a violation of rules to prevent unsafe incidents at sea agreed in the 1970s (AFP/Petrut Calinescu)

A Polish helicopter aboard the Cook was scheduled to conduct flight operations but those manoeuvres were cancelled because of the Russian actions, the official said.

On Tuesday, a Russian KA-26 submarine-hunting helicopter circled the Cook seven times, taking photographs, he added.

Later that day, another pair of Su-24 attack planes, apparently unarmed, buzzed the Cook 11 times.

The incident comes after months of continuing diplomatic tensions between Moscow and Washington over Russia’s role in conflicts in Ukraine and Syria.

Additional reporting by AP

Zarb-e-Azb In N. Waziristan To Secure Gwadar in Balochistan

[SEE:  India-Pakistani Competition Translates Into Competing Economic/Transit CorridorsPak-India Corridor Competion—Victory Goes To Side Which Overcomes Terrorist Roadblocks]

‘Zarb-e-Azb is concept to break syndicate of terrorism, corruption’

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By: Samaa Web Desk

GWADAR: General Raheel Sharif, Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Tuesday said the security agencies would leave no stone unturned for security of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), Samaa reported.

“As chief of army staff, I assure you security of CPEC is our national undertaking. We will continue close watch at every step,” DG ISPR Lt-Gen Asim Bajwa quoted Gen Sharif as saying.

He was addressing a seminar on peace and prosperity in Balochistan and CPEC during his visit to Gwadar.

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He termed CPEC as a project of peace and prosperity for the entire region. “CPEC is a grand manifestation of deep rooted ties between China and Pakistan,”

“Having passed through tough fight against terrorism, we have come a long way in our struggle for stability and development,” he said.

Highlighting the importance of Operation Zarb-e-Azb in tribal region, the COAS said that the military offensive was not only an operation but also a wholesome concept aimed at breaking the syndicate of terrorism, extremism and corruption.

Gen Sharif urged the international community to not only acknowledge the country’s successes and sacrifices, but also come forward and block external help to terrorist organizations, facilitators, abettors and their financiers.

gwadar1

He said that transparency and good management is important for sustainability of the CPEC.

He said that wide appreciations from world powers for CPEC’s potential also raised many eyebrows by those competing for influence in region.

“Hostile intelligence agencies averse to this grand project, especially Indian RAW is blatantly involved in destabilising Pakistan,” Gen Sharif said.

“We will not allow anyone to create impediments and turbulence in any part of Pakistan. Hence, important for all to leave behind confrontation and focus on cooperation,” he added.

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He said that army engineers are involved in unprecedented development of communication infrastructure in the province. –Samaa