Text Bulletin 2000 hrs
Advisor on Foreign Affairs says the ECO Summit being held in Islamabad on Wednesday will help build Pakistan's positive image in the world.
Planning Minister has said that Pakistan and the United States pursue common goal of eliminating terrorism and establishing peace in the region.
A high level meeting under the Interior Minister discussed means and ways to overcome the menace of terrorism today.
In the ongoing Operation Radd-ul-Fasaad, security forces have so far killed four terrorist and arrested over six hundred suspects.
AJK government plans to construct bunkers along the Line of Control for safety of local people.
APHC leaders say Kashmir is a political dispute and it cannot be resolved through military means.
Germany has re-emphasized the need for two-state solution of the Palestinian issue.
Several Azerbaijani troops were killed in a clash with Armenian forces in disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region today.
In Pakistan Super League, Peshawar Zalmi will take on Quetta Gladiators tonight.
The 13th Economic Cooperation Organization Summit will be held in Islamabad on Wednesday.
Briefing the media persons in Islamabad today, Advisor to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said that most of the member states have already confirmed participation at Heads of State or Heads of Government level.
The summit would be preceded by the two days senior officials' Meeting from tomorrow and Foreign Ministers' Meeting on Tuesday.
Sartaj Aziz said the theme of ECO Summit is "Connectivity for Regional Prosperity". The Summit will deliberate and decide on ways and means to augment cooperation in the areas of connectivity, trade, energy, tourism, investment, industry, economic growth, productivity, social welfare and environment.
He said high level participation of the member states will greatly enhance the vitality and substance of the Summit.
He said ECO Observers and special guests have also been invited to attend the Summit.
Replying to a question, he said the summit will send a very positive message to the world.
The Advisor said China-Pakistan Economic Corridor is an excellent example of the summit's theme of connectivity and this project will connect with the existing and the planned transit and energy corridors in the ECO region for greater progress.
To another question, Sartaj said our importance and strategic role in Muslim countries is still vitally significant and we will continue to participate in the proceedings of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation.
He said the summit will adopt ECO Vision 2025 that lays tangible goals for ECO
The Advisor said after completion of CPEC and linkage of other corridors in the region,the objectives of bilateral
trade, development and prosperity would start bearing fruits.
Talking to a Chinese delegation led by Ambassador Lu Shumin in Islamabad, Sartaj Aziz said the strategic cooperative relationship between Pakistan and China is an anchor for regional peace and stability.
He said Pakistan adheres to One China Policy and supports China on all issues relating to its sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity encompassing Taiwan, Tibet and Hong Kong.
Ambassador Lu Shumin condemned the recent terrorist attacks in Pakistan and lauded the sacrifices rendered by Pakistan and its security forces in its fight against terrorism and extremism.
Minister for Planning Ahsan Iqbal has said that Pakistan will maintain its relations with the United States keeping in view the current regional situation.
He was speaking at a seminar on 'New US Administration and Pakistan's Strategy' in Lahore today.
The Minister said that Pakistan and the United States have commonalities in their national interests and policies as both want elimination of terrorism and establishment of durable peace in Afghanistan.
He said job creation is another priority of the US government and Pakistan could play its role in development of American industry while becoming part of its high chain
supply and value addition on win-win basis.
The Minister said that US President Donald Trump has also expressed his resolve to further improve relations with Pakistan during his
telephonic conversation with Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif.
He said that now European countries, Central Asia, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Iran and United Kingdom are eying Pakistan and showing their keen interest to be part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.
Minister for Petroleum Natural and Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has said that Pakistan is on the path of economic development and nobody can derail this process.
Addressing a gathering in Murree today, he said the government is striving hard to resolve the problems of common people and huge funds have been allocated for their socio- economic uplift.
The Minister said the elements who want to disrupt the pace of progress by creating hurdles with their negative political tactics will never succeed.
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan has urged media to play its role in countering the menace of terrorism.
Addressing a consultative meeting along with Minister of State for Information Marriyum Aurangzeb in Islamabad today, he said the purpose to convene this meeting is to discuss the one-point agenda of countering terrorism.
The Minister said media has great strength and reach to public and it should play role to motivate people by keeping them united and determined against terrorism.
He said the entire nation should be kept united and determined by media for ultimate victory in the war against terrorism.
The Minister said law and order situation has improved a lot during the last three and half years.
He said that effective measures have been taken to counter terrorism and the success story is due to efforts of all law enforcement agencies.
Later talking to newspersons, Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said National Action Plan is being implemented under an effective coordinated mechanism throughout the country.
He said the media needs to disseminate credible information keeping in view the national interest.
Minister for States and Frontier Regions Abdul Qadir Baloch has said the government and the armed forces are committed to flush out menace of terrorism.
In an interview, he said terrorism is an issue of national importance and the valiant armed forces have rendered countless sacrifices in the war against terror.
The Minister said the entire nation and the government want revival of military courts for elimination of terrorism.
He said law and order situation in the country is much better as compared to the past.
Chief Minister Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that terrorism is the biggest threat and we have to eliminate this monster unitedly.
He was addressing a convocation at Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences in Jamshoro.
The Chief Minister said that a joint operation has been launched in collaboration with Pakistan Army and Pakistan Rangers in border areas with Balochistan and in other districts of Sindh.
Operation Radd-ul-Fasaad continues across the country.
According to ISPR, Punjab Rangers conducted over 200 Search Operations in various areas, including Karor, Layyah and Rawalpindi.
During the operation suspected houses, Madrassas and shops were searched.
Four terrorists were killed in exchange of fire while over 600 suspects, including Afghans, have been apprehended.
Jihadi material and weapons have also been recovered and several facilitators of Jamat-ul-Ahrar have also been arrested.
Meanwhile, seventy-eight suspects were arrested during search operations in different areas of Peshawar and Charsadda today.
Fifty-eight suspected people were apprehended in different areas of Peshawar while twenty suspects, including five proclaimed offenders were busted in Serdehri area of district Charsadda.
Arms and ammunition were also recovered from them.
Levies force has arrested forty seven Afghan nationals near Pak Afghan border in Nokundi.
The arrested Afghan nationals were residing in the area without legal traveling documents.
Chairman Qaumi Wattan Party, Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao has stressed the need for close cooperation between Pakistan and Afghanistan to eliminate terrorism in the region.
Addressing a news conference in Peshawar today, he said terrorism is a common threat to both the countries and they should jointly work for its elimination.
Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao said that terrorists are targeting soft targets to frighten the masses.
He said the security forces will not let terrorists to succeed in their nefarious designs.
Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that the government attaches top priority to provision of standard healthcare facilities to the people.
Presiding over a high level meeting in Lahore today, he said that reforms regarding the provision of better medical facilities are yielding positive results.
The Chief Minister said that state-of-the-art hospitals have been set up in big cities of the province and many other health projects are also underway.
Earlier, talking to Austrian Ambassador Bargita Bilhar who called on him in Lahore, Shahbaz Sharif said Pakistan and Austria enjoy cordial relations and there is need to enhance trade and economic relations between two countries.
The Austrian Ambassador showed keen interest in investment in hydro power projects and also generating electricity from garbage in Punjab province.
Pakistan's ambassador-designate to the United States Aizaz Chaudhry has said that improving Pakistan's image and enhancing cooperation in trade, energy and security will be his top priorities.
Aizaz Chaudhry who is currently serving as Foreign Secretary while talking to a delegation of FPCCI said that his top priorities will be to build on the positive momentum, promotion of trade and economic cooperation as well as improving consular services.
Aizaz Ahmed said Pakistani-Americans have played a laudable role in serving the country by projecting a positive image.
Governor Sindh Muhammad Zubair has said that Karachi is very much suitable for investment as it is economic hub of the country.
He was talking to renowned industrialist Mirza Ikhtiar Baig who called on Sindh Governor Mohammad Zubair in Karachi today.
During the meeting, they discussed matters pertaining to industrial development and investment opportunities in the province.
Pakistan’s first ever Abilities Expo 2017 for special children began at Expo Centre Karachi today.
Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah inaugurated the Expo.
Educational and medical facilities, equipment and accessories used for special children have been showcased in the exhibition.
Our Karachi representative reports that the objective of the Expo is to provide better growth and educational opportunities to the special people
Speaking on the occasion, Murad Ali Shah said the provincial government will provide financial and moral support to the special children to prove their worth.
Balochistan government plan to construct three medcial colleges in the province.
The Provincial Health Department informed our correspondent in Quetta that construction of one medical college at Kech has been approved and it will be completed at a cost of 3491 million rupees.
Another medical college will be established at Loralai and it will be completed at a cost of over one billion rupees.
Construction of the third medical college at Khuzdar will also be completed at a cost of over one billion rupees.
Chief Minister Gilgit Baltistan Hafiz Hafeez-ur -Rehman has said that a number of development projects costing one hundred billion rupees are being implemented in the region.
Talking to various delegations in Gilgit today he said the federal government has allocated huge amount for development program in Gilgit Baltistan.
Director General Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation Saba Mohsin has said that Radio Pakistan as a voice of nation is playing an effective role for the promotion of national harmony.
She was addressing the staff and artists of Radio Pakistan Bahawalpur during her visit today.
She said Radio Pakistan has created awareness among the people about socio-economic, cultural, educational and religious issues through news and programmes
She said Radio Pakistan's Sautul Quran Channel will start its transmission from Bahawalpur very soon.
Azad Kashmir Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider Khan says concrete measures are being taken to secure population living along the Line of Control.
Addressing a public gathering at Keil area of district Neelum today, he said the federal government and people of Kashmir are standing shoulder to shoulder with affectees of firing by Indian forces at the LOC.
Raja Farooq Haider Khan said solid bunkers will be constructed along the Line of Control to secure the local community.
In occupied Kashmir, All Parties Hurriyet Conference say India’s repressive tactics cannot suppress the freedom movement of Kashmiri people.
APHC Chairman Syed Ali Gilani and General Secretary Shabbir Ahmed Shah in their statements said that Kashmir a political dispute, which could not be resolved through military might.
They said the remarks of Indian Army Chief General Bipin Rawat depicted India’s intransigence and arrogance of power.
People observed complete shutdown and held forceful demonstrations in Pulwama town today against the arrest of a youth by Indian police during a raid last night.
On the other hand, former Indian Minister P Chidambaram while addressing a meeting in Hyderabad, said that India has nearly lost Kashmir because the government used brute force to quell dissent in occupied Kashmir.
In Syria , forty two people were killed and several injured in two seperate bomb attacks on two security office buildings in the government controlled city of Homs today.
At least six suicide attackers killed thirty people including the head of the local Military Intelligence branch at one of its headquarters while 12 more people at a branch of state security in al-Ghouta and al-Mohata districts.
Iraqi forces pushed deeper into western Mosul today amid stiff resistance from entrenched Islamic State militants.
Troops advanced in several more populated built-up southern districts and more than 1,000 civilians have fled the conflict zone today.
Iraqi forces had declared eastern Mosul fully liberated in January after officially launching the operation to retake the city in October last year.
Lebanon has accused Israeli military of firing tear gas against protestors across the U.N. demarcated border .
There was no immediate comment from the United Nations.
In Libya, ceasefire came into force in Triploi today after two days of fighting between rival armed groups.
The fighting erupted after one group accused the other of
kidnapping four of its members.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has stressed the need to work for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
In her weekly video message today, the German Chancellor said there is no other opinion to achieve peace in the Middle East.
Speaking at an election campaign in Stralsund today Angela Merkel said NATO's target of two percent gross domestic product must be fulfilled to boost defene spending.
Azerbaijan says several of its soldiers were killed in clashes with Armenion forces in the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region. today.
Azeri Defense Ministry said in a statement today that its forces suffered losses when their positions were assaulted by Armenian troops.
Armenian forces did not suffer any casualties.
In New York, planned talks between North Korea and former US officials next week were canceled after State Department refused to issue visas for North Korean diplomats.
The United Nations has called on political parties in Burundi to commit themselves fully to peace talks to resolve the two-year old political crisis in that country.
The crisis was sparked in the country by the decision of Burundi President Pierre Nkurunziza to run for a third term in office.
U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres in a report to the Security Council urged all stakeholders to take part the East African Community-led dialogue without pre-conditions.
The United Nations say an estimated 366 migrants have died so far at sea during their Mediterranean journey to Europe this year.
International Organization for Migration has reported that 13,924 migrants entered Europe by sea through February, which is sharply down from 105,427 last year.
In China, ten people were killed in a fierce blaze at a hotel in southeastern Jiangxi province today.