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Following are the top foreign stories at 1700 hours

·3-min read

FGN 27 PAK-TLP-BAN Islamabad/Lahore: Pakistan on Wednesday decided to ban a radical Islamist party under the Terrorism Act after its supporters clashed with the law enforcement agencies for the third consecutive day, leaving seven persons dead and over 300 policemen injured.

FGN3 US-CHINA-INDIA-REPORT China-India border tensions 'remain high' despite some force pullbacks: US Intel Report Washington: China-India border tensions 'remain high' despite some force pullbacks this year, the US intelligence community has told Congress, asserting that Beijing seeks to use coordinated, whole-of-government tools to demonstrate its growing strength and compel regional neighbours to acquiesce to its preferences, including its claims over disputed territory.

FGN4 US-INDOPAK-REPORT India under PM Modi more likely to respond with military force to Pak provocations: US intel report Washington: India, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is more likely than in the past to respond with military force to perceived or real Pakistani provocations, the US intelligence community has told Congress in a report.

FGN10 VIRUS-LDCS-INDIA-VACCINES LDCs support request made by India, South Africa for waiving COVID vaccine-related IPR United Nations: The 46-member grouping of the Least Developed Countries has said it supports a request made by India and South Africa to the WTO to temporarily suspend intellectual property rights for the COVID-19 vaccines to increase their access in these countries.

FGN 1 US-BIDEN-AFGHANISTAN US Prez to present on Wednesday details of plan to withdraw all troops from Afghanistan Washington: US President Joe Biden plans to present on Wednesday the details of his plans to have all American troops out of war-torn Afghanistan by September 11 this year, the 20th anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attack on the twin towers in New York.

FGN22 UK-LD QUEEN Queen returns to royal duties after husband Prince Philip's death London: Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II has returned to royal duties, four days after her husband Prince Philip – the Duke of Edinburgh's death last Friday.

FGN15 LANKA-TERROR-GROUPS-LD BAN Sri Lanka bans ISIS, al-Qaeda and 9 other terror groups Colombo: Sri Lanka has banned 11 hardline Islamist organisations, including the Islamic State (ISIS) and al-Qaeda, for their links to extremist activities in the country and warned that any person who conspires with them would be sentenced to prison terms between 20 and 10 years, according to an official announcement.

FGN14 LANKA-INDIAN-NAVY-SHIP Indian naval ship pays goodwill visit to Sri Lanka Colombo: INS Ranvijay, an Indian Navy destroyer arrived in Sri Lanka on Wednesday on a three-day goodwill visit to the island nation as part of the efforts to develop close maritime and security cooperation between the two friendly and close neighbours.

FGN20 VIRUS-UK-VACCINE-STUDY UK expands COVID-19 mix and match vaccine trial London: A study assessing the benefits of mixing and matching coronavirus vaccines has been extended to include the Moderna and Novavax jabs. PTI TEAM NSA