Africa, News Watch, Side Feature, South Asia

Views on the News 24/11/2021

• Déjà vu Sudan
• Pakistan Turns to IMF Again
• New Bill to Remove British Citizenship

Déjà vu Sudan

After being removed in a coup a month ago Abdalla Hamdok has reinstated by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan after signing a political agreement. Twelve cabinet ministers submitted their resignation in protest against the political deal between the prime minister and the country’s ruling military council. The deal was largely welcomed by the international community, but the opposition protests in Sudan have rejected it as an “attempt to legitimise the coup”. They demand that the military should not be part of any future Sudanese government. The military has turned the coup into a debate around returning to civilian rule. The military is working to navigate the political transition where it remains in power and uses the mirage of civilian rule as a cover from behind the scenes.

Pakistan Turns to IMF Again

The Dawn reported on 22 November that Pakistan’s extended fund facility, an International Monetary Fund bailout program, will be moving forward with its sixth review after Islamabad reached several reform and policy agreements with the IMF. As part of its compliance with IMF conditions Pakistan will be bringing legislation to Parliament that will give the State Bank of Pakistan greater autonomy. Pakistan will need to continue implementing harsh fiscal measures, which has seen the plummeting popularity of Prime Minister Imran Khan. Pakistan currently faces soaring inflation and an increasing debt burden after implementing policies to appease the IMF. Pakistan has only received $2 billion of the $6 billion IMF bailout program entered into the $6 billion IMF bailout program in 2019 and has received $2 billion so far.

New Bill to Remove British Citizenship

British citizens could have their citizenship removed without warning following a new clause added to the Nationality and Borders Bill, which was quietly updated earlier this month. The updated bill makes the government exempt from giving Britons notice of any citizenship removal under various circumstances, including in cases when it is not “reasonably practical” to do so. Critics say removing citizenship is already a contentious power, and scrapping the requirement for notice would make the home secretary’s powers even more draconian. “This amendment sends the message that certain citizens, despite being born and brought up in the UK… remain migrants in this country,” Frances Webber, vice-chair of the Institute of Race Relations, said to The Guardian. The UNHCR said such plans would be in violation of international law. Powers to revoke citizenship from British nationals, particularly for security reasons, have been extended through legislation since the 9/11 attacks in 2001. It was under such powers that the Home Office removed the citizenship of Shamima Begum, a British woman who travelled to Syria as a teenager to marry an Islamic State group fighter.