Text Bulletin 2000
Headlines 2000 hrs
Army Chief has categorically stated that terrorists will never succeed to regain their lost relevance.
Pakistan has expressed the desire to enhance relations with the new US administration.
Punjab government has announced to increase development budget for local governments soon.
Balochistan Chief Minister says twelve projects in the province have been included in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Project.
Pakistan handed over an Indian Army deserter to Indian authorities at Wagha border today.
In Occupied Kashmir, complete shutdown was observed in Gaw Kadal today to pay tribute to martyrs of deadliest massacre in the area twenty-seven years ago.
United Nations has launched a fresh appeal for five hundred fifty million dollar humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan
The fourth One Day International between Pakistan and Australia will be played at Sydney tomorrow.
Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa has categorically stated that terrorists will not succeed in their attempt to regain lost relevance.
He stated this in a statement issued following Parachinar blast in Kurram agency in which twenty-two people were killed and eighty-seven other injured on Saturday.
President Mamnoon Hussain and Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif have expressed their deep grief over loss of precious lives in the deadly blast.
Expressing their condolences for the departed souls, they directed for urgent medical assistance to the injured.
Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra also condemned the blast and sympathized with the bereaved families.
The Interior Minister sought report of the incident.
Minister of State for Information Marriyum Aurangzeb reiterated the government's commitment to eliminate the last terrorist from the country.
She said the enemies of peace in the country will be dealt with iron hands.
The Minister of State said such cowardly attacks cannot dent the resolve of the nation against the menace of terrorism.
Funeral prayer of the twenty-two martyrs of the blast was offered at Parachinar, Khurram Agency on Saturday evening.
Inspector General of Frontier Corps Major General Shaheen Mazhar Mehmood, MNA Sajid Tori, Political Agent Khurram Ikram Ullah and a large number of people from different walks of life attended the mass funeral prayer.
Later, the bodies were handed over to the relatives and heirs of the martyrs.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra visited Combined Military Hospital Peshawar today and inquired about the health of those injured in Parachinar blast.
He directed the hospital administration to provide the best available healthcare to the injured.
The Governor also announced provision of three hundred thousand rupees to heirs of each martyred, one hundred and fifty thousand rupees to each critically injured and one hundred thousand to each minor injured from on behalf of the federal government.
Corps Commander Peshawar Lt. General Nazir Ahmed Butt also visited CMH Peshawar and inquired about the health of people injured in Parachinar bomb blast.
US Ambassador to Pakistan David Hale called on Finance Minister Muhammad Ishaq Dar in Islamabad on Saturday.
During the meeting, matters pertaining to bilateral interest, including trade and economic ties were discussed.
Expressing good wishes for the US President Donald Trump, Finance Minister said Pakistan wants to increase bilateral trade and economic relations with the new US administration.
He said there is immense potential of increasing trade and investment between the two countries.
The Minister also highlighted increasing foreign investment in Pakistan after economic stability in the country.
Speaking on the occasion, the US Ambassador David Hale said the United States considers Pakistan an important partner and US gives special importance to its long-term relations with Pakistan.
Advisor to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz has said that Islam is a religion of peace but negative perception of Islam is being spread in the West.
He was addressing the book launching ceremony of Barrister Zafarullah Khan in Islamabad on Saturday.
Sartaj Aziz said Muslims around the world are concerned about their future and we have to highlight the positive identity of Islam and Muslims in the world.
The Advisor said efforts should be made to take back Islam to its true roots.
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan has said the government is putting forth its best efforts to honour the confidence reposed by people.
Addressing a public meeting in Chakri near Islamabad on Saturday, he said better results are pouring in now due to hard work and effort of present government.
The Minister said despite criticism of the opposition parties he is committed to serve the people and country.
Meanwhile, addressing different public meetings in Rajar, Sihal and Taxila today, Interior Minister said politics is done on the basis of action and performance, not on empty rhetoric and false allegations.
He said people of Pakistan are aware enough to judge things on the basis of performance of political parties.
Commerce Minister Khurram Dastgir Khan will arrive in Brussels on a four-day official visit to Belgium on Sunday.
During his visit, he will chair a conference of trade officers based in Pakistan's missions in Europe.
The Minister will hold meetings with senior officials of European Commission and members of European Parliament, besides meeting with Pakistani community in Belgium.
The Minister will apprise the EU Commission and the European parliamentarians of the growing economic potential of Pakistan in the wake of improved law and order situation and institutional reforms carried out by the Government of Pakistan.
Khurram Dastgir will also share improvements achieved in the production sector in Pakistan.
Minister for Planning Ahsan Iqbal has emphasized the need for improvement in services of Pakistan International Airlines to make it a world class airliner.
This he stated while presiding over a meeting in Islamabad on Saturday in connection with reforms in PIA.
The Minister said any effort for revival of the organization will never succeed without clear road map.
He also directed the authorities to prepare a comprehensive plan of two years, which will be presented to Prime Minister for approval.
Ahsan Iqbal said that loss making routes will be reviewed and more planes will be inducted.
Pakistan School Safety Framework will be finalized in March this year.
The framework, being finalized by the National Disaster Management Authority in collaboration with UNICEF Pakistan, will help promote a safe learning environment in schools against natural and man-made hazards.
Besides, it will ensure preparedness of the school community against hazards and enable schools to develop a comprehensive response mechanism against any disaster.
Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that the role of local governments is of vital importance in resolving the problems of people at grassroots level.
Presiding over a high level meeting in Lahore on Saturday, he said local governments in the province have become functional and development budget for local governments will also be increased in near future.
The Chief Minister said the provincial government will provide all-out support to local governments to make them financially independent.
Meanwhile, talking to MNA Daniyal Aziz in Lahore, he said Orange Line Metro Train will be operational soon to provide better transport facilities to the citizens.
Talking to PML N leader Chaudhry Ahmed Saeed, Shahbaz Sharif said selfless service to masses is the mission of PML-N government.
PML-N leader and Member National Assembly Hamza Shahbaz Sharif has said that China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and success in war against terrorism are the achievements of present government.
Talking to newsmen in Lahore on Saturday, he said the government is utilizing all available resources to provide basic facilities to the masses.
Hamza Shahbaz said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has failed in providing basic facilities to its people.
Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Zehri has termed China Pakistan Economic Corridor as a project of prosperity and development for Balochistan.
Addressing a news conference in Islamabad on Saturday, he said twelve projects of the province have been included in the mega project.
Chief Minister said these projects will help generate thousands of new job opportunities for the youth.
He said that Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif is fulfilling his promises made during the general elections.
National Highway Authority during the past three years has focused on revival of Gwadar connectivity and delayed projects in Balochistan.
According to spokesman of Authority, NHA has completed three delayed projects in Balochistan proving connectivity to Gwadar Port while the fourth is near completion.
He said that eighteen point six billion rupees have been spent on the completion of four hundred forty-nine kilometers long Basima-Nag-Panjgoor-Hoshab Highway (N-85).
Similarly, balance work of 193 km Gwadar-Hoshab section of Rattodero-Gwadar Motorway (M-8) has been completed at the cost of thirteen billion rupees.
Spokesman said that work on Khuzdar-Rattodero section of M-8 is also nearing completion.
Provincial Disaster Management Authority Balochistan has taken various precautionary measures to cope any rain and snowfall related emergency in view of forecast of Met Department in the coming week.
According to PDMA, Crisis Management Cell has been set up at office of the authority.
Moreover, relief items, including tents, blankets, medicines and other essential daily use commodities, have also been provided to all districts.
Frontier Corps Balochistan has arrested eighty-one terrorists during intelligence based operations in different areas of the province.
A huge cache of arms and ammunitions was recovered from them.
Work on the construction of Swat Motorway is in progress.
Commander Special Security Division Major General Abid Rafique held a meeting with Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Minister Hafiz Hafeez-ur-Rehman in Islamabad.
They discussed matters pertaining to security of transport on Karakarum High Way and Chinese workers engaged in various development projects in Gilgit-Baltistan.
Major General Abid Rafique informed the Chief Minister that retired military men will also be hired in this regard.
During the meeting, the Chief Minister assured that all possible support will be extended for CPEC security division.
Azad Jammu and Kashmir government has allocated nine hundred seventy million rupees for one thousand five hundred seventy-one projects of Community Infrastructure Programme.
The approval was given at a meeting presided over by AJK Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider Khan in Islamabad.
Under Community Infrastructure Programme, a number of projects related to provision of water supply schemes, construction of footpaths, additional rooms in educational institutions and construction of link roads will be completed.
Pakistan handed over an Indian soldier, Chandu Babulal Chohan, to Indian authorities at Wagah border on Saturday afternoon.
According to Foreign Office, the Indian soldier had deserted his check post in Occupied Kashmir and crossed the Line of Control over severe grievances with his superiors and leadership.
Pakistan convinced the soldier to return to India being an Indian national, and address his grievances through local grievance mechanisms.
The Foreign Office said Pakistan's decision to return the Indian soldier is based on humanitarian grounds and the commitment to ensure peace and tranquility at the Line of Control and the Working Boundary.
It said despite Indian belligerence, Pakistan believes in peaceful neighbourhood and rejects all actions aimed at undermining regional peace and security.
In occupied Kashmir, complete shutdown was observed in Gaw Kadal and its adjoining areas on Saturday on completion of 27 years of the deadliest Gaw Kadal massacre.
Call for the strike and demonstrations were given by the joint resistance leadership. All shops and business establishments remained closed while traffic was off the road in Maisuma and Lal Chowk areas of Srinagar.
The puppet authorities imposed restrictions in these areas and deployed Indian troops and police personnel in strength across the city to prevent people from staging demonstrations against the Gaw Kadal massacre.
The authorities continued to put Hurriyet leaders, including Syed Ali Gilani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Muhammad Yasin Malik, Shabbir Ahmed Shah and Hilal Ahmed War under house arrest or in custody to stop them from leading the demonstrations.
Addressing a function in the memory of the martyrs at Gaw Kadal, Hurriyet leaders demanded bringing to book the troops involved in such massacres in the occupied territory.
More than 50 innocent people were killed in Gaw Kadal area of Srinagar on January 21 in 1990 when Indian forces had resorted to indiscriminate firing on peaceful demonstrators who were protesting against the molestation of several women by troops.
In Syria, Russian warplanes carried out airstrikes on Islamic State targets in Deir ez-Zor on Saturday.
According to Russian Defence Ministry, the planes flew from Russian territory and struck a number of IS targets in the area.
Meanwhile, four civilians were killed in a car bomb blast at a camp for displaced people in Rukhban area Syria near border with Jordan.
In Egypt, eight people were killed when a shell hit a house in southern Rafah in the north of Sinai today.
The United Nations has launched a $550 million dollar humanitarian appeal for Afghanistan.
UN Humanitarian Coordinator Mark Bowden said in statement that around 9.3 million people will be in need of help this year, which is thirteen percent more from last year.
The statement said, aid organizations are expecting around one million more Afghans to return from neighboring countries this year.
Germany has expressed the desire to seek compromise with the United States on issues of trade and military spending.
In a statement, German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed the wish to preserve relationship between Europe and the United States.
In Italy, sixteen people were killed and many other injured in a bus crash on a motorway in northern area of the city on Saturday.
The bus was carrying around fifty passengers.