President Mamnoon Hussain has urged that the political process should be above individual and parochial interest for the sake of higher objectives of national progress and prosperity. He was addressing the joint session of the Parliament in Islamabad today to mark beginning of the new parliamentary year. The President pointed out that difference of opinion on the process of development and rights on the national resources is not unusual. However, it is also imperative to block the avenues of chaos emerging from difference of opinion through a well thought out strategy. He said this will help thwart all efforts to make the process of national development controversial. President Mamnoon Hussain referred to the steps being taken to bring Balochistan and FATA in the national mainstream and said these are part of effort to include the marginalized classes in the development process. He hoped that all segments of the society will participate in the task of national reconstruction with the same spirit. He said trade and investment friendly policies and CPEC and power projects are manifestation and components of the plan to exploit precious resources for welfare of the people.

Pakistan rejects baseless Afghan Allegation about Pakistan involvement in recent terrorist attack in Kabul: FO

At his weekly news briefing in Islamabad, Foreign Office Spokesperson Nafees Zakariya said the accusatory approach is unhelpful towards efforts to peace. Pakistan itself has suffered immensely from the menace of terrorism and given unparallel sacrifices in the war on terror. Pakistan has the highest stakes in Afghan peace and stabilty more than any other country of the world.

Completion of ongoing power projects to help overcome load-shedding: Dar

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar says government has made difficult decisions to bring the economic situation to improvement. Addressing a post budget conference in Islamabad on Thursday evening, he said suggestions of all stakeholders were taken into consideration while preparing budget. He said the present economic stability is due to collective wisdom and consultations. Ishaq Dar said when we assumed power in 2013, Pakistan was passing through a difficult time and foreign exchange reserves of the country had fallen to 11 billion dollars, with the risk of default looming on the horizon.

Pakistan fully supports Saudi Arabia’s territorial integrity: Sartaj

Foreign Affairs Adviser Sartaj Aziz has said that Pakistan maintains a balanced position on regional conflicts and fully supports Saudi Arabia's territorial integrity and protects the sanctity of Harmain Sharifain. He said this while responding to a calling attention notice moved by Farhat Ullah Babar regarding statements of Saudi Authorities that the Islamic Military Alliance will not restrict only to terrorist organizations like ISIS Al-Qaeda but it will also take action against the rebel groups posing threat to any Member country, on the request of that country, as reported in media. He said all members will themselves decide as to in which activity they want to participate. These activities include political consultation, intelligence sharing, capacity building, counter narrative, and military cooperation.

Indian troops resorted to unprovoked firing at Battal, Jandrot and Hotspring sectors at Line of Control Thursday morning.

According to ISPR, three civilians were injured due to Indian firing. In response, Pakistani troops effectively targeted Indian positions.

Punjab budget to be presented in provincial assembly on Friday

Punjab Governor Malik Muhammad Rafique Rajwana has summoned the Punjab Assembly session in the assembly chambers in Lahore on Friday. Provincial Finance Minister Dr Ayesha Ghaus Pasha will present the annual Budget for the financial year 2017-2018.

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