JUNE 25, 2017


The nation celebrates Eidul Fitr tomorrow with religious zeal and enthusiasm.

One hundred and thirty eight people were burned alive as petrol spilling out of an oil tanker caught fire in Ahmadpur Sharqia today.

Prime Minister is returning home tonight cutting short his visit to the UK after Ahmadpur Sharqia oil tanker tragedy.

Punjab Chief Minister has announced a compensation of two million rupees each for deceased and one million rupees each for the injured of Ahmadpur Sharqia tragedy.

Pakistan, China, and Afghanistan have agreed to hold Foreign Minister-level talks to discuss all aspects of Pak-Afghan relations.

Pakistan says it is opposed to nuclear arms race in South Asia.

World Bank and International Finance Corporation have decided to increase financing for Pakistan by thirteen point three billion dollars over the next three years.

In Occupied Kashmir, Indian troops in their fresh act of state terrorism martyred two more Kashmiri youth in Srinagar today.

US President Donald Trump has accused his predecessor of inaction over alleged Russian interference in US election in 2016.


Nation celeberates Eid-ul-Fitr with religious zeal and fervor tomorrow.

Chairman Central Ruet-e-Hilal Committee Mufti Muneebur Rahman announced the sighting of Shawwal moon after a meeting of the committee in Islamabad this evening. He said the moon was sighted in most parts of the country.

The day will dawn with special prayers after fajr in mosques for the well being of the ummah, progress and prosperity of Pakistan, and pledge to make the country a citadel of Islam.

After sunrise, the faithful will throng mosques, eidgahs and open places to offer eid prayers.

After offering eid prayers, the faithful will meet each other and exchange eid greetings.

However, this year's eid celebrations have been eclipsed by the Ahmadpur Sharqia oil tanker incident, which claimed 138 lives and injured over 150 others. The incident has saddened the entire nation. Details from our correspondent:

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has decided to return home today cutting short his visit to United Kingdom due to the oil tanker incident in Ahmadpur Shaqria.

This was announced by PM office today.

Meanwhile,talking to media after offering Eid Prayer in London today, he expressed grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives in the incident and termed it a national tragedy.

Prime Minister said he has issued directions to Punjab Chief Minister to personally visit the victims and take speedy measures for providing all possible assistance to those injured in the incident.

He said the incidents of terrorism in Quetta, Parachinar and the fire in Ahmedpur Sharqia have saddened the nation on the eve of Eid. 

Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has announced a grant of two million rupees for family of each deceased and one million rupees for each injured person.

He was talking to newsmen after chairing high level meeting at Bahawalpur today.

He also announced to hold inquiry to know the exact cause of the incident.

Earlier, he visited Combined Military Hospital and Bahawal Victoria Hospital, Bahawalpur and inquire about the medical facilities extended to the injured persons.

Rescue and releief operations at the site of oil tanker tragedy in Ahmadpur Sharqia have been completed.

According ISPR, the incident site has been cleared and traffic restored on national highway.

Fifty one seriously burnt victims have been shifted to Multan through Army helicopters.

Pakistan International Airlines has announced free travel for those, who suffered injuries in Ahmadpur Sharqia incident, from Bahawalpur/Multan to Karachi for treatment.

PIA also offered 50 per cent concession to the one accompanying the inujred to Karachi.

Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb says the incident of oil tanker fire in Ahmadpur Sharqia has saddened the nation a day before Eid.

Talking to PTV today, she said all government institutions played their due role in relief and rescue operations.

Meanwhile, in a statement, the Minister of State appealed to media to remain careful in covering and broadcasting news and footages of the incident.

She said media should follow the code and conduct and avoid interviewing the bereaved families and injured persons.

Pakistan and China have agreed to strengthen mutual cooperation and coordination in dealing with the common challenges to peace and security.

This was stated by Advisor to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaz Aziz while addressing a joint press conference along with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Islamabad today.

Sartaj Aziz said Pakistan has consistently stated that peace and stability in Afghanistan is in our interest and a stable Afghanistan would help us promote our shared agenda of economic development and regional connectivity.

He said Pakistan's relations with China are the cornerstone of our foreign policy.

Sartaj Aziz said we took stock of the progress made in bilateral relations, including political, strategic and economic cooperation and identified areas for further consolidation of the 'all weather' relationship between Pakistan and China.

The Advisor said Pakistan wants peaceful relations with all its neighbors including India and we agreed to the need for strategic balance in South Asia.

He said Pakistan has informed China about its efforts to strengthen cooperation with Afghan government in counter-terrorism, border management and voluntary return of Afghan refugees.

He said Pakistan is very grateful to China for its constructive proposals for promoting peace and harmony in the region.

Sartaj Aziz said according to these proposals, Pakistan, Afghanistan and China have agreed to conduct Foreign Minister-level dialogue to discuss all aspects of Pak-Afghan relations with special focus on economic cooperation.

He said it is also agreed that a bilateral crisis management mechanism between Afghanistan and Pakistan will be established.

He said this would enable the two sides to maintain timely and effective communications in case of any emergency, including terrorist attacks.

He said Afghanistan, Pakistan and China also agreed to revive the Quadrilateral Coordination Group process in order to create a conducive environment for talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban.

Speaking on the occasion, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Pakistan is playing a vital role in ensuring peace and stability in the region.

He said Pakistan has rendered unprecedented sacrifices in war on terror and the world should appreciate and acknowledge these efforts.

Chinese Foreign Minister said Pakistan is also playing a crucial role in completing the projects under the umbrella of China Pakistan Economic Corridor as a part of One Belt One Road vision.

He said China wants a peaceful and stable Afghanistan to ensure development and prosperity and will work with Pakistan and Afghan government for a durable peace.

President Mamnoon Hussain says Pakistan appreciates Chinese efforts to bring peace and stability to Afghanistan.

He was talking to Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi who called on him in Islamabad today.

The President said this initiative will ultimately establish peace in the region

He said Pakistan is committed to peaceful co-existence with all its neighbours and wants to resolve all issues with India including Kashmir through peaceful means.

He said security of Chinese nationals working in Pakistan is the responsibility of the government and all out efforts are being made to arrest the culprits involved in recent abduction of two Chinese nationals.

President said a special security division comprising fifteen thousand personnel has been established for the security of CPEC and Chinese engineers and workers.

On this occasion, the Chinese Foreign Minister said Pakistan has the potential to play a role for peace in the region.

He said Pakistan, China and Afghanistan should hold a joint meeting to discuss peace efforts.

China has acknowledged Pakistan Army's sacrifices and contributions towards peace and stability in the region.

Talking to Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa in Rawalpindi today, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said that Pakistan Army is also playing a prospective role towards regional economic development.

Speaking on the occasion the Army Chief said Pakistan will continue to positively contribute towards regional peace and stability.

Matters of mutual interest and regional security with special reference to Afghan situation and China Pakistan Economic Corridor came under discussion.

The World Bank has approved a mid-term review to support social sector development in Pakistan in partnership with International Finance Corporation.

According to the sources, the World Bank will provide assistance for improvement in energy sector, service delivery and enhancing capability of institutions.

The mid-term startegy is in line with Pakistan's Vision 2025 which include econmic reforms, power sector reforms and sustainable solutions to financial issues.

The World Bank and IFC also decided to increase financing by thirteen point three billion dollars for various sectors in Pakistan over the next three years.

The World Bank and IFC are extending support for improvement of agriculture sector in Punjab, urban development in Karachi and uplift of living standards of people in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan.

Chief Minister Balochistan Nawab Sanullah Khan Zehri has directed law enforcement agencies to take extra security measures across the province on the occasion of Eid-Ul- Fitr, to avoid any untoward incident .

According to an official hand-out, he has also directed divisional Commissioners, DIGs and District Coordination Officers to remain alert in their respective districts to maintain law and order on Eid days.

Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Muhammad Zakaullah spent a day with Pakistan Navy troops deployed in coastal areas of Balochistan, today.

He visited naval installations at Jiwani and interacted with the officers and jawans.

During interaction, the Admiral applauded their professionalism and dedication in safeguarding the maritime frontiers of the country.

While citing the recent terrorist attack on a Pakistan Navy vehicle, he said the cowardly acts of terrorism cannot dent our morale.

Corps Commander Peshawar Lieutenant General Nazir Ahmed Butt visited Parachinar today and met relatives of those martyred in blasts.

Addressing a tribal Jirga on the occasion, he urged local people to support the security forces in their efforts to establish peace in the area.

The Corps Commander assured that those behined the bomb blasts will be traced and awarded exemplary punishment.

Minister of State for Housing Barrister Usman Ibrahim says the government is taking result oriented-measures to address problems of the people at their doorsteps.

Addressing a gathering of PML-N workers in Gujranwala today, he said the government is executing several mega projects in the country that would create new opportunities of progress.

He said government believes in transparency and implementing merit policy in all affairs of the government.

The United Nations Development Programme will provide three hundred million rupees to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government for promotion of tourism in the province.

Senator Agha Shahbaz Khan Durrani of Pakistan Muslim League (N) passed away due to cardiac arrest in Khuzdar today.

He was laid to rest in his ancestral graveyard after funeral prayers at Khuzdar this afternoon.

A large number of people attended his funeral prayer.

Governor Balochistan Mohammad Khan Achakzai and Chief Minister Sanaullah Zehri have expressed deep grief and sorrow over the sad demise of Agha Shahbaz Durrani.

They condoled with the bereaved family and prayed for eternal peace of the departed soul.

Foreing Office Spokesperson Nafees Zakaria has said that Pakistan opposes nuclear arms race in the region.

In an inteveiw with Radio Pakistan Islamabad's correspondent he said Pakistan believes in peaceful use of nuclear energy.

Pakistan has welcomed the creation of the new UN Counter Terrorism Office and announced to provide all possible assistance to it.

Speaking at a meeting of the UN Advisory Board, Pakistan's Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi expressed the hope that the new office will help bring better coordination and coherence across the UN system on counter terrorism.

The Pakistan envoy also congratulated Russia on the appointment of their veteran diplomat Vladimir Ivanovich Voronkov as Under-Secretary General for the newly established office.

Azad Jammu and Kashmir President Sardar Muhammad Masood Khan says the day is not far off when the people on both sides of the Line of Control will celebrate Eid together after liberation of Occupied Kashmir from India.

In his message on the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr he said Muslim Ummah should not forget sacrifices of the people of Jammu and Kashmir on this auspicious occasion.

Sardar Masood Khan said sacrifices of Kashmiri people will never go waste and surly crown with success in near future.

He urged international community to take serious notice of Indian state terrorism and play its role in implementing UN resolutions on Kashmir to establish durable peace in the region.

In Occupied Kashmir, Indian troops in their fresh act of state terrorism, martyred two Kashmiri youth in Srinagar, today.

According to Kashmir Media Service, the troops killed the youth inside a school building during a violent cordon operation in Pantha Chhoke area of Srinagar. The troops also resorted to heavy mortar shelling during the operation that continued for over seventeen hours. Three Indian soldiers including a Captain also sustained injuries during the operation.

Meanwhile, the illegally detained Chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front, Muhammad Yasin Malik, in a statement issued in Srinagar said that India had converted occupied Kashmir into a killing field and a big prison.

The Hurriyat forum led by Mirwaiz Umar Farooq in a statement in Srinagar strongly condemned the night raids by Indian police on the residences of pro-freedom leaders and activists and harassment of their family members ahead of Eid-ul-Fitr.

Hurriyet leaders including Syed Ali Gilani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Shabbir Ahmed Shah, Agha Syed Hassan Al-Moosvi Al-Safvi, Ghulam Muhammad Khan Sopori, Muhammad Shafi Reshi and Maulana Sibt Muhammad Shabbir Qummi felicitated the Muslims across the world on the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr.

In Afghan province of Herat, ten security force members have been killed and four wounded in a Taliban attack in Chishti Sharif district.

A spokesman for provincial police chief said militants stormed a check post and managed to get away with weapons after killing the soldiers.

He said four militants were also killed in clash with security forces.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has dismissed calls to close a military base in Qatar.

Speaking outside a mosque in Istanbul today, Turkish President said the call to withdraw Turkish forces was disrespectful.

In Syria, ten people have been killed in a car bomb attack in rebel-held Idlib province.

According to Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the attack occurred in a market in the town of al-Dana, located in north of the province near Turkish border.

Meanwhile, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad offered his Eid prayers in Hama today which shows the government troops have regained control over larger areas of the country.

Iranian authorities have arrested fifty people suspected of links to militant groups in Kermanshah province.

Provincial prosecutor Nemat Sadeqi told the state news agency IRNA today that a large number of suicide belts, electronic detonators, and weapons have been seized from the detainees.

President Donald Trump has accused his predecessor Barack Obama of inaction over alleged Russian interference in the US election in 2016.

Trump said Obama had learned well before the 8 November poll about the accusations, but he did nothing.

His comments followed an article in the Washington Post which said that Obama learned last August of President Vladimir Putin's direct involvement.

President Putin has repeatedly denied any Russian interference into the presidential election.

In Philippines, military started observing an eight-hour halt in its offensive against militants today in southern Marawi city to allow residents to celebrate Eid.

In a month long military offensive, 280 militants, 69 soldiers and police, and 26 civilians have been killed.

In Albania, voting is underway for parliamentary election today.

Ruling Socialists and rival Democrats are seeking a majority to push through judicial reforms vital for membership of the European Union.

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