Text Bulletin 0700 hrs
Defence Minister says PML- N will cooperate with JIT in probe into Panama papers case.
Designated banks will remain open on Saturday and Sunday to receive Hajj applications.
Sixth death anniversary of renowned TV artist Moin Akhtar is being observed on Saturday.
In Afghanistan, fifty soldiers have been killed in an attack by militants on a military base in Mazar-i-Sharif.
The United States and Russia have agreed for objective investigation into a chemical attack in Syria.
Minister for Defence Khawaja Asif says the people have expressed full confidence in leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
In an interview, he said prime minister was ready for investigation of baseless allegations levelled against him in Panama Papers.
He said PML-N would cooperate with Joint Investigation Team and also provide evidence of all its questions to probe the matter.
Khawaja Asif said PML-N under the leadership of Nawaz Sharif would win the general election in 2018 with thumping majority.
Khawaja Asif said PTI chief Imran Khan was doing politics of protests in the country which was harmful for himself. Besides, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leadership was changing its position from time to time on different issues, but PML-N was not worried about such politics of both political parties.
Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has said people of Pakistan had elected Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) government for five year constitutional term and it would be completed.
In an interview, he said PML-N would go to the masses on the basis of its performance in the general election 2018.
Shahid Khaqan Abbasi welcoming the decision of Supreme Court to constitute Joint Investigation Team (JIT) on Panama Papers said the Prime Minister was ready to cooperate with the JIT as well.
Minister of State for Information Marriyum Aurangzeb says Supreme Court's verdict is an endorsement of Prime Minister's letter which he had earlier written to the apex court for formation of a judicial commission to probe Panama Papers issue.
In an interview, she said earlier Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in his address to the nation had presented himself to accountability.
Marriyum Aurangzeb said there is no truth in the allegations leveled against the prime minister. She said Panama case was used as a political crutch.
The minister of state said prime minister provided full opportunity to PTI to prove its capability in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa but it failed.
She said people are fully aware of the performance of Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governments.
Spokesman to the Prime Minister Dr Musadik Malik has said the people will vote PML-N in the next general election on the basis of welfare and development projects.
In an interview, he said those who will perform and give service to the people would win the next general election.
He said Pakistan Peoples Party could not deliver well in Thar and other areas of Sindh.
Minister of State for Water and Power Abid Sher Ali has said that Pakistan is heading towards prosperity under the leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
In a statement, he said the government launched various development projects including CPEC, energy and health to made Pakistan prosperous.
He asked Co-Chairperson of Pakistan People's Party Asif Ali Zardari not to level baseless allegations against the prime minister.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar says Pakistan's economy has witnessed tremendous economic turnaround and is currently reckoned as one of the fastest growing economies in the region with countless investment opportunities.
He was delivering a keynote address at the Heritage Foundation in Washington on the topic `Pakistan's Economic Reforms: It's Quest for Investment, Prospects for Development & Social Change.
The minister said the government has vigorously pursued 4Es strategy focusing on Energy, Economy, Elimination of Extremism and Education. Structural reforms were introduced which included reducing un-targeted subsidies and broadening tax base coupled with building Foreign Exchange Reserves and curtailing inflation rates.
He said tax collections have increased by 60% over the last 03 years which is a complete break with the past.
Commenting on China Pakistan Economic Corridor, he said that CPEC is a game changer not only for Pakistan but for the entire region as it presents gigantic investment opportunities for the investors.
The minister said that Pakistan and the U-S are longstanding friends, partners and strategic allies. They have enjoyed a strong long-term, and broad bilateral partnership with many shared interests.
He emphasized that Pakistan is looking forward to working closely with the new US Administration to further develop and strengthen bilateral relations.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar also held a meeting with President of UN General Assembly Peter Thomson in Washington and discussed development goals of 2030.
Deputy Secretary General of UN General Assembly was also present in the meeting.
The State Bank of Pakistan has announced that banks designated to receive Hajj applications will remain open on Saturday and Sunday.
The last date to receive Hajj applications is 26th of this month, while balloting will be held on 28th of this month.
Under the government scheme, 1,07526 people will perform Hajj this year.
Head of Foreign Affairs Committee European Parliament David McAllister has called on Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif in Lahore.
He applauded Shehbaz Sharif hard work and said that Punjab is burgeoning under his vigorous leadership.
Pakistan has been re-elected as member of the Committee on Programme and Coordination of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
Pakistan secured forty-eight votes out of fifty members of the Council.
Pakistan will continue its membership till 2020.
Sixth death anniversary of renowned actor and comedian Moin Akhtar is being observed on Saturday.
He was also a writer, singer, film director and a producer.
Moin Akhtar was awarded Pride of Performance and Sitara-e-Imtiaz by the government of Pakistan.
Moin Akhtar died on April 22, 2011 in Karachi of cardiac arrest.
At least fifty Afghan soldiers have been killed in an attack by Taliban insurgents on a military base in Mazar-i-Sharif.
US military spokesman John Thomas told media that attack was a significant strike probably involving more than 50 casualties.
It occurred near a mosque and a dining area of the camp.
United States and Russia have agreed for objective investigation of a chemical weapons attack in Syria.
The agreement came during a telephone call between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
They decided that the probe will be held under the aegis of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.
The United States launched a cruise missile attack against a Syrian airbase earlier this month after accusing the government forces of carrying out a chemical attack in which many people were killed.
Israel has targeted positions inside Syria after alleging a mortar fire that struck northern part of the Golan Heights.
A statement from Israel's military said the Israeli army hit the source of the fire.
Israel seized 1,200 square kilometres of the Golan from Syria in 1967 war and later annexed it in a move never recognised by the international community.
In Iraq, twenty-six Qataris and two Saudis have been freed after being kidnapped and held in the country for nearly a year and a half.
A Qatari official said the hostages' release was linked to a major evacuation of Syrian civilians and fighters from four besieged towns completed on Friday.
In France, polling for presidential election will be held Sunday.
The four front running candidates are centrist Emmanuel Macron, far-right Marine Le Pen, conservative Francois Fillon and far left Jean-Luc Melenchon.
The voting will be followed by a runoff on seventh of next month between the top two candidates.
On the second day of the first cricket test against Pakistan at Kingston, West Indies will resume play at an overnight score of 244 for seven on Saturday.
Earlier, Pakistan won the toss and elected to field.
Mainly hot and dry weather is expected in most parts of the country during the next twelve hours.
However, dust thunderstorm and rain with gusty winds is likely at scattered places in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab, Islamabad, FATA, Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan and at isolated places in Quetta, Zhob division.
Temperature of some major cities recorded on Saturday morning:
Islamabad twenty degree centigrade, Lahore twenty-five, Karachi twenty-six, Peshawar twenty-one, Quetta thirteen, Gilgit fourteen, Murree fifteen and Muzaffarabad seventeen degree centigrade.