It has become a common practice at press conferences of government ministers and, in at least one case, that of the opposition as well. Promise us, they started demanding of information minister Fawad Chaudhry, that your ministry will also not advertise in these channels. In this sequence of events, even ministers with other portfolios, like Sheikh Rasheed, for instance, had their press conferences shut down, till the information minister heeds their demands. The latest on this front, of course, is the ban on the entry of the information minister at the Karachi Press Club, a ban that is set to spread to the press clubs of other cities as well. Now, this isn’t a situation like what happened with former PTI KP information minister Shaukat Yousafzai, whose entry to the Peshawar Press Club was banned because he was behaving rudely.
February 16, 2019 16:18 UTC
ANKARA: Turkey will not turn back from its deal to buy S-400 missile systems from Russia, President Tayyip Erdogan was quoted as saying on Saturday, a day after an informal deadline Washington set for Ankara to respond to a rival offer passed. They have also said it would jeopardize Turkey’s purchase of Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 fighter jets and possibly result in the United States imposing sanctions. However, speaking to reporters on the flight back from the Russian resort of Sochi, where a three-way summit on Syria between Turkey, Russia and Iran was held, Erdogan said Ankara would press on with the S-400 purchases. “We made the S-400 deal with Russia, so it out of the question for us to turn back. The United States asked Turkey to give at least an informal answer on whether it would go ahead with its S-400 purchase by Feb. 15, one US official said.
February 16, 2019 16:14 UTC
Move is announced ahead of first official state visit of Saudi crown princeISLAMABAD: A day before the scheduled visit of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman’s to the country, the Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Islamabad has approved a drastic cut in visa fees for Pakistanis who want to visit the kingdom. While, the fee for multiple-entry visit visa has also been reduced from SAR3,000 to SAR675 (from $800 to $180). Saudi Arabia to offer 2-year multiple visas to Pakistani businessmenThe move is announced ahead of the first official state visit of the Saudi crown prince, beginning from February 17. Earlier in the day, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry had said that Pakistan and Saudi Arabia enjoy historic relations. “We are tied with Saudi Arabia in economic and social ties, based on Islamic brotherhood,” he said in an interview to a Saudi TV channel.
February 16, 2019 16:07 UTC
Afridi rolled back the years and produced a vintage all-round performance to headline Multan Sultans’ first win in PSL 2019. Twenty-two-year-old seamer Ali Shafiq also impressed with 2 for 11 as Islamabad United cobbled only 125 for 7 in their 20 overs. Shafiq did not concede a single boundary in his four overs and burst through the gate of Shadab Khan, who had been promoted to No. STAR AFRIDI:After claiming the key wicket of Ronchi, Afridi bowled Philip Salt with a quick fizzer. Afridi then walked into bat in the chase, with Multan needing 25 off 21 balls.
February 16, 2019 16:04 UTC
ISLAMABAD: The federal government on Saturday announced that government offices in Islamabad situated on the Constitution Avenue will remain closed on Monday, February 18, due to the visit of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman. “All Federal Govt offices situated on the Constitution Avenue except (essential staff of certain ministries) in the capital shall remain closed on Monday 18th Feb,” Federal Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry tweeted. All Federal Govt offices situated on the Constitution Avenue except (essential staff of certain ministries) in the capital shall remain closed on Monday 18th Feb. pic.twitter.com/dHAxSVKbN4 — Ch Fawad Hussain (@fawadchaudhry) February 16, 2019Originally due to arrive in Pakistan on Saturday, the Saudi crown prince will be now be arriving on Sunday. Due to a change in his schedule, the government has announced the closure of offices on the Constitution Avenue. Meanwhile, the Punjab government has imposed Section 144 ahead of the Saudi crown prince’s visit.
The dealers also surrendered 350,000 vanilla-scented, small red yaba pills — whose name comes from a Thai word meaning “crazy medicine” — and 30 illegal firearms. Teknaf is situated in Cox’s Bazar district — home to around a million Rohingya refugees — bordering Myanmar. Arrested and killed: inside the Bangladesh prime minister’s war on drugsOn Friday, Bangladesh security forces seized 570,000 yaba pills in separate drives in the border region next to Myanmar’s northern Rakhine state. According to the Department of Narcotics Control, some five million people in Bangladesh are drug users with yaba the most popular substance. The country seized a record 53 million yaba pills last year.
February 16, 2019 15:56 UTC
LONDON: A memorial to Karl Marx at the cemetery in north London where the 19th century political philosopher is buried has been defaced for the second time in less than a fortnight – this time with red paint. Earlier this month, the monument in Highgate cemetery, which is among British structures listed as being of exceptional historical interest, was damaged with a hammer. Pictures posted on Twitter by the cemetery on Saturday showed the marble gravestone daubed with political slogans. The German revolutionary socialist, author of “Das Kapital” and co-author of the “Communist Manifesto”, lived in London from 1849 until his death in 1883. His memorial has been attacked in the past with paint, and in 1970 an attempt was made to destroy it with a bomb.
Describing the results of Donald Trump’s presidency as “remarkable” and “extraordinary”, Pence told senior European and Asian officials the EU should follow the United States in quitting the Iran nuclear deal and recognizing the head of Venezuela’s congress, Juan Guaido, as the country’s president. “The time has come for our European partners to withdraw from the disastrous Iran nuclear deal,” he said. Speaking before Pence, Merkel questioned whether the U.S. decision to leave the Iran nuclear deal and withdrawal from Syria was the best way to tackle Tehran in the region. Merkel, who later met Pence for bilateral talks, defended plans for a new natural gas pipeline from Russia to Germany that Pence again criticized. Pence also told NATO allies not to buy weapons from Russia or China and to spend more on defense.
Footage of the incident goes viral on social mediaKARACHI: A motorcyclist was overpowered by the security personnel after he managed to break into Karachi airport’s international departure entrance on Saturday. Footage of the incident went viral on social media, in which a man can be seen wrestled to the floor and then being taken into custody by Airport Security Force (ASF) personnel at the Jinnah International Airport. Motorcycle rider tried to break the departure gate at Karachi airport. Terror in Karachi: airport under siegeOfficials and medics confirmed that 12 people – including seven officials of the ASF – were killed in the assault. Security at the airport has been beefed up ever since the terrorist attack.
February 16, 2019 15:37 UTC
Thousands of demonstrators are still massed outside Albanian parliamentTIRANA: Thousands of opposition supporters protested outside the Albanian parliament Saturday, demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Edi Rama, and clashed with police who used tear gas and water cannons. Several windows were broken as some demonstrators threw smoke grenades and stones towards the parliament building. Albania bans 52 Greeks after ‘extremism’ at funeralThousands of demonstrators were still massed outside parliament by the early afternoon, an AFP journalist said. “The 16th of February will be the last day in power for Rama,” Basha told a meeting of his supporters on Wednesday. Both the left and the right have accused their opponents of corruption and of being linked to organised crime.
February 16, 2019 15:22 UTC
The Awami Workers Party (AWP) on Saturday filed a writ petition in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) against the blocking of their official website by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA). Apart from asking for unblocking of its website, AWP has further urged the court to guard the fundamental rights of citizens in online spaces and to compel PTA to exercise its powers of blocking online content strictly in accordance with the law. According to details, the website of the AWP had been blocked on July 3, 2018. The party says it has filed the writ petition as a last resort since the website continues to be inaccessible. The petition, filed through advocates Muhammad Haider Imtiaz and Umer Ijaz Gilani, has been fixed for hearing before the the chief justice of the IHC for Monday.
February 16, 2019 15:07 UTC
–Pak, India chapters of PIPFPD stress need to probe Kashmir attack, resume unconditional dialogueLAHORE: Pakistan chapter of Pakistan India Peoples’ Forum for Peace & Democracy (PIPFPD) has strongly condemned the Pulwama attack that claimed the lives of 40 Indian paramilitary troops and wounded at least 44 others. “We express our deep condolences to the victims’ families, the Indian government and the Indian people for the loss of lives in this brutal attack,” they said in a statement issued here. “In line with its principled position, PIPFPD unequivocally condemns terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and believes that such heinous acts of terrorism cannot be justified on any ground. It stressed on the need for Islamabad and New Delhi to resume composite and unconditional dialogue and make people of Jammu and Kashmir an inclusive part of it. “We hope relevant regional countries will cooperate to cope with the threat of terrorism and jointly uphold regional peace and stability,” the statement concluded.
February 16, 2019 15:00 UTC
Indian hackers attacked the official website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA), Foreign Office Spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal said on Saturday. According to reports, the website is currently inaccessible from the United States, United Kingdom, Holland, Norway, Australia, and other countries. The cyber attack comes amid heightened tensions between the nuclear-armed South Asian neighbours following the Pulwama attack in which 44 Indian paramilitary soldiers were killed in the Indian-occupied Kashmir on Thursday. The government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been quick to point fingers at Pakistan for the Pulwama attack and threatened to take “revenge”. Pakistan also launched a diplomatic offensive to counter Indian attempts to link Islamabad with Thursday’s attack.
February 16, 2019 14:48 UTC
PML-N leader visits Nawaz at Lahore's Jinnah HospitalPakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Maryam Nawaz on Saturday hit out at the government saying the state’s persecution of the Sharif family would soon come to an end. Maryam made the remarks while speaking to the media during her visit to her ailing father at Lahore’s Jinnah Hospital, Express News reported. “By the grace of Almighty, he [Nawaz] is feeling much better than before,” she said, adding that, the family was yet to receive her father’s medical report from doctors. She, however, lamented that authorities decided to shift Nawaz to Jinnah Hospital instead. On Friday, the three-time prime minister of the country was shifted to Jinnah Hospital from Kot Lakh Pat Jail on instructions of the government.
February 16, 2019 14:26 UTC
DUBAI: Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed has urged the talented players to show their mettle in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) which is one the gateways for securing prominence and breaking into international cricket. The PSL’s one of the objectives is to promote and groom young players. “The selection committee and management will surely consider if any exceptional talent is spotted during the PSL who can be picked for the national team. So, it’s up to these young players to work hard and hard and break into the national team,” Sarfraz said. If he continues to play like this, I’m sure he will soon make a comeback,” said Sarfraz.
February 16, 2019 14:26 UTC