Following are the top foreign stories at 2000 hrs

·3-min read

FGN45 UNCTAD-INDIA-ECONOMY India's economy projected to record stronger recovery in 2021: UNCTAD United Nations: India’s economy, estimated to contract by 6.9 per cent in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, is forecast to record a 'stronger recovery' in 2021 and grow by 5 per cent, according to a UN report which said the country's current fiscal year budget points to a shift towards demand-side stimulus, with an uptick in public investment.

FGN30 PAK-INDIA-BAJWA Army chief Gen Bajwa says it's time for India and Pak to bury the past and move forward Islamabad: Pakistan Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa said on Thursday that it was time for India and Pakistan to 'bury the past and move forward' as he asserted that the peace between the two neighbours would help to 'unlock' the potential of South and Central Asia.

FGN44 CHINA-RUSSIA-LAVROV-VISIT Russian FM Lavrov to visit China as Beijing, Moscow warm up to counter US’ tough policy push Beijing: Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will visit China next week amidst the stepped-up efforts by the two countries to further solidify their close ties to counter the Biden administration’s plan to pursue a tough policy towards Beijing and Moscow on a host of issues including human rights violations.

FGN36 VIRUS-UK-VACCINES UK vaccine timetable disruption linked to supply delays from India London: As the UK’s National Health Service warned of a “significant reduction in weekly supply” of vaccines to protect against COVID-19 by the end of this month, the focus on Thursday turned to 5 million doses that are expected to be delivered from India.

FGN40 UK-ISIS-BRIDE ISIS bride Shamima Begum pleads for 'second chance' from UK London: Shamima Begum, the London-born Bangladeshi-origin woman who fled the UK to join the Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist network in Syria as a teenager, has pleaded for a “second chance” from Britain, according to a newly released documentary on so-called jihadist brides.

FGN13 US-SENATOR-LD INDIA Top US Senator urges Defence Secy to discuss India's plan to buy Russian S-400 system and rights issues during visit Washington: An top American Senator has urged US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin to take up with the Indian leaders the issue of India's plan to purchase Russian S-400 missile defence system and concerns on human rights issues during his visit to New Delhi this week. FGN7 US-LAWMAKERS-WAIVER-WTO Biden called upon to support India, South Africa at WTO on COVID-19 vaccines Washington: A group of American lawmakers has urged President Joe Biden to support the move by India and South Africa before the World Trade Organization for an emergency temporary waiver of some Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) rules to enable greater production and supply of COVID-19 vaccines, treatments, and diagnostic tests. FGN14 VIRUS-UN-INDIA India expected to register largest increase in child and maternal deaths in South Asia in 2020 amid COVID-19 disruptions: UN United Nations: India is projected to register the greatest increase in the number of deaths among children under 5 in South Asia in 2020 as well as the highest number of maternal deaths as the COVID-19 pandemic disrupts the country's health services, a UN report has said. FGN28 NEPAL-POLITICS Nepal's ruling CPN-UML's meeting forms 24-member parliamentary board Kathmandu: The parliamentary party meeting of Nepal's ruling CPN-UML, led by Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli, formed a 24-member parliamentary board and three-member statute amendment task force on Thursday even as leaders of the rival faction boycotted the meet, according to media reports.

FGN17 US-INDIANS-GREEN CARD-PROTEST Indian-American healthcare workers in Green Card backlog hold demonstration before US Capitol Washington: A group of Indian-American frontline healthcare workers languishing in the Green Card backlog held a demonstration in front of the US Capitol urging lawmakers and the Biden administration to end the per capita country-specific quota. PTI PMS