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March, 2018


Marvia Malik: A Trendsetter as Pakistan’s First Transgender News Anchor

(IFTIKHAR RAHAT) — A 21-year-old journalist is making history in Pakistan by becoming the country’s first transgender news anchor. Pakistan’s social networks was humming following Marvia Malik’s first on-air appearance on March 23 and in the days since she’s gone viral across Facebook and Twitter, with many praising the move as progress for transgender rights in Pakistan. Marvia was of the opinion that much more is required to be done for improving the lives of Pakistan’s transgender community. She says she is confident and wants to prove that people fromRead More

For First Time in 70 Years, 2020 U.S. Census to Ask About Citizenship

The last census in 2010 put the U.S. population at nearly 309 million. A question about citizenship will be added to the 2020 Census, the U.S. Commerce Department said — a controversial tactic to enforce the Voting Rights Act. In December, the Justice Department asked the Census Bureau to reinstate the question on the census, which has not appeared since 1950. At the start of every decade, the bureau counts the total number of people in the United States — not the total number of citizens — to determine eachRead More

Sexual Abuse Where UN Chief Has No Jurisdiction To Act

THALIF DEEN— As sexual harassment charges in the UN system keep piling up, the UN Secretariat has a new administrative problem on its hands: accusations of sexual abuse in the New York office of the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC) whose members are elected by the 193-member General Assembly – but not answerable either to the Secretary-General or the President of the Assembly. So, the lingering question facing the UN remains ambivalent: is there an exception to the Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ “zero tolerance policy” on sexual exploitation and abuse (SEA)Read More

FIA Report Reveals 824 Pak Bureaucrats Dual Nationals: ‘614 Have Declared, 210 Concealing It’

(PKONWEB Report) – The Supreme Court of Pakistan was informed on Monday that there were as many as 758 government officials holding dual nationality, that spouses of 824 officials are dual nationals, with 614 officials declaring the same and 210 officials concealing it but detected through different means. Moreover, the spouses of 98 officials are foreign nationals, and 21 officials had concealed the very fact. According to the report presented in the apex court by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), of those concealing their dual national status, 59 are servingRead More

Pak Army Chief in Brunei; What’s Behind the Sultanate’s New Defense Budget Hike?

(PKONWEB Report) — Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff, General Qamar Javed Bajwa who is on an official visit to Brunei Darussalam, met leadership of the country. The Army Chief met sultan of Brunei, Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Muizzaddin Waddaulah. Matters of mutual interest including bilateral defense cooperation and military to military ties between both the countries were discussed, according to ISPR press release. Gen Bajwa also met Deputy Defense Minister, Maj Gen Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi bin Mohd Yussof (Retd). Later the Pak Army Chief met military leadership ofRead More

U.S., Pakistan Strongly Condemn Houthi Missile Attacks on Saudi Arabia

(PKONWEB Report) — The The United States of America and Pakistan strongly condemned the dangerous Houthi missile attacks aimed at several cities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on Sunday night. One person was killed after seven missiles were fired from Yemen by the Houthi rebels, CNN reported. The missiles were fired at four targets, including the capital city of Riyadh, and all were intercepted and destroyed, said Saudi coalition forces spokesman Col. Turki al-Maliki in a statement. Fragments from the intercepted missiles killed an Egyptian resident, the statement added.Read More

Pakistan Part of New South Asia Economic Geography

Pakistan needs to quickly initiate a progressive model of economic reforms in line with the changing regional and global dynamics. This will not only ensure sustainability of economic growth but will also put Pakistan in a leadership position in the new South Asian economic geography. HAROON SHARIF – THE contours of a new economic and political geography within South Asia are clearly emerging on the map with enhanced connectivity among China, Pakistan, Russia, Iran, Afghanistan and Central Asia. This transition is already having a remarkable influence on the thinking patterns,Read More

Pakistani Community Urged to ‘Stay Positive’ Following Attacks in Dublin

(PKONWEB Report) — The Pakistani ambassador to Ireland has pleaded for the community in Dublin to “stay positive.” It follows two separate assaults on Pakistani men in the Irish capital last week. Last Monday a 21-year-old student was attacked on Cork Street which resulted in surgery for a broken hip. The student reported that a group of nine males counted down from ten before assaulting him at a bus stop. Separately a butcher was assaulted on Moore Street last Wednesday where he was left unconscious. He was treated at theRead More

‘March For Our Lives’ Rally Organizers Vow No Letup in Gun Control Campaign

Thousands of students take part in the ‘March For Our Lives’ rally against gun violence in Washington, DC on Saturday. (PKONWEB Report) — Hundreds of thousands of protesters have taken to the streets across the US to call for tighter gun control. The March For Our Lives movement arose after 17 deaths in a school shooting in Parkland, Florida, last month. Student leader and Parkland survivor Emma Gonzalez gave a powerful speech at the main Washington DC event. After listing the names of the victims, she stayed silent on stageRead More

Islamabad United Snatch Back PSL Champions Trophy from Peshawar Zalmi

(PKONWEB Report) — The Islamabad United on Sunday snatched PSL Champions Trophy from the reigning champs Peshawar Zalmi beating them by scoring 154 runs for 7 wickets at the sprawling National Stadium in Karachi which had not hosted an international level match for a decade due to security issues in the mega city. The capital city side defeated Zalmi by three wickets to reclaim the title they had won in the league’s inaugural edition in 2016. Congratulations to Islamabad United and the management for the great show, said Zahida aRead More

Remittances to Pakistan From Oman Rise 12Pct as Rupee Weakens

(BE2C2 Report) — Pakistani expats have been remitting more money back home after the value of the Pakistani rupee fell sharply against the Omani rial. CEO of Oman UAE Exchange Boban M P told Times of Oman his company had registered a 12 percent increase in remittances to Pakistan since the weakening of the Pakistani rupee last week. The value of the Pakistani rupee against a single rial stood at just over Rs300 on the morning of March 25. This is a fall of nearly Rs14 from some Rs287.50 inRead More

Great Homecoming for International Cricket to Karachi the City of Lights After 9 Years

Meanwhile, Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif advised the foreign players not to miss out on trying traditional ‘Bundu Khan Ke Kebab’ while they are still in Karachi. (PKONWEB Report) –  A jubilant crowd of thousands has thronged the Karachi National Stadium today for the Pakistan Super League 3rd Edition final between defending champions Peshawar Zalmi and inaugural champions Islamabad United– regardless of who wins today, the foolproof security and management system setup by the civil-military to bring cricket back to the country’s financial capital gets a thumbs up. Prime MinisterRead More

Big Time Cricket Returns to Karachi After 9 Years With PSL Final Today

(PKONWEB Report) – More than 15,000 security personnel have been deployed for Sunday’s finale of Pakistan Super League 3rd Edition at the National Stadium in Karachi– Pakistan’s economic powerhouse and the City of Lights. The Sindh province’s capital and country’s financial center is hosting the international-level cricket match after a gap of 9 years. Islamabad United and Peshawar Zalmi will battle for the championship– Peshawar Zalmi will be defending the PSL crown. Karachiities have been given an opportunity to enjoy this historical event in a city that once remained inRead More

Greece Arrests 3 Pakistani Traffickers Holding 21 Migrants Hostage

Greek police in the northern city of Thessaloniki say they have arrested three Pakistanis who allegedly held 21 migrants hostage in a warehouse on the outskirts of the city, demanding money to release them. The migrants — 13 Eritreans, 7 Pakistanis and one person from Myanmar — had crossed over from Turkey on Wednesday and were taken by the three traffickers to the warehouse. Police say the traffickers were demanding 2,500 euros ($3,090) from each person. The arrests took place Friday but were announced Saturday. In an unrelated case, aRead More

Why Trump Administration Wants Saudi Arabia to Be Interlocutor Between US and Pakistan

IRSHAD SALIM: The White House on Wednesday said there is an opportunity for Saudi Arabia to be a key interlocutor between the US and Pakistan—their bilateral relationship has reportedly hit rock-bottom after the US President announced in August his South Asia policy to end America’s 16-year old conflict in Afghanistan which has cost taxpayers more than $1 trillion plus. And Trump’s new year early morning tweet accusing Pakistan lies, deceit and deception did the rest. Since then the two’s floundering alliance metaphorically speaking is in the ICU, as both seekRead More

ADB to Provide $260 Million Loan for Pakistan Power Transmission Network Upgrade

(BE2C2 Report): The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will provide a $260 million loan to the Government of Pakistan to improve the country’s power transmission network and help offtake of power from new and renewable energy power projects being financed and constructed under China Pakistan Economic Corridor and other offgrid private-power initiatives. The funding announcement dovetails ADB announcement earlier this month that it is committed to financing Turkmenistan-Afghanstan-Pakistan (TAP) project. “The Asian Development Bank is committed to financing TAP. We have put aside some money to finance it,” said ADB countryRead More

FDI Seen Surging in Pakistan, But Some Western Investors Fret Over Chinese Influence

Pakistan expects net foreign direct investment (FDI) to jump about 60 percent in 2017/2018, the chairman of Pakistan’s Board of Investment said, but some Western investors appear to be put off by China’s growing influence in the country. Chinese companies are building roads, power stations and a deep-water port in Pakistan after Beijing offered more than $60 billion in funding for Pakistani infrastructure as part of China’s vast Belt and Road initiative (BRI). The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is BRI’s flagship project that will provide China the shortest routeRead More

China Provides Pakistan Highly Sophisticated Tracking System for Missile Program

China has sold Pakistan a powerful missile tracking system in an unprecedented deal that could speed up Pakistan military’s development of multi-warhead missiles, the South China Morning Post reports. News of the sale – and evidence that China is supporting Pakistan’s rapidly developing missile program – comes two months after India tested its most advanced nuclear-ready intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) with a range long enough to hit Beijing or Shanghai. India dubs Pakistan and China– close allies, as its rivals and seeks to Chinese authorities declassified information about the dealRead More

U.S., Pakistan Relationship is Transactional, Islamabad Mistook it as Strategic: Experts

Pakistan cannot be a strategic ally of the US as the latter’s interests in South Asia contradict Pakistan’s national interests, defense and security experts said on Monday at a seminar in capital Islamabad organized by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI). Pakistan’s relationship with the US is transactional, and Islamabad mistook it as strategic, said Abdul Basit, president of the Islamabad Policy Research Institute. US interests in South Asia “are totally in contradiction to the national interests of Pakistan,” and “we don’t have any foreign policy to deal with theRead More

U.S. Expresses Clear Opposition to Russian Gas Pipeline Through Baltic Sea to Germany

Russia wants to twin its Nord Stream gas network running through the Baltic Sea to Germany, but faces stiff opposition. Building the second leg of the Russian gas pipeline running through the Baltic Sea would threaten European energy security, the U.S. government said. A bipartisan group of 39 senators sent a letter last week to the U.S. Treasury Department expressing opposition to Russian plans to twin the Nord Stream pipeline to Germany. If built, it would leave U.S. allies in Europe more exposed to the Kremlin’s “malign influence,” the letterRead More