PAKISTAN: ‘ US Embassy employee shot Dead in Islamabad ‘

#AceWorldNews – PAKISTAN:July.26: Police in Islamabad have identified a man who died of gunshot wounds as Pakistani citizen Iqbal Baig, who they say worked for the US Drug Enforcement Agency, reports AP.

The motive for the attack remains unclear. The US contractor’s body was found at his home, where he is believed to have been killed early on Sunday morning. US Embassy security officials have already visited the crime scene.

Baig belonged to a Shiite minority sect known as the Ismaili. In Sunni-dominated Pakistan, the Shia often become victims of Islamic extremists, who regard them as heretics.

In May, some 50 Ismaili were shot dead by gunmen in the country’s southern port city of Karachi.

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#gunshot-wounds, #iqbal-baig, #islamabad, #pakistan, #us-drug-enforcement-agency, #us-embassy

PENTAGON: ‘ REPORT ALLEGES ISLAMABAD SUPPORTS MILITANT PROXIES IN INDIA & AFGHANISTAN ‘

#AceWorldNews – WASHINGTON – November 06 – Pakistan summoned the US ambassador after a Pentagon report alleged that Islamabad supports militant proxies in neighbouring India and Afghanistan, AP reported.

The Foreign Ministry said on Thursday that Pakistani National Security and Foreign Affairs adviser Sartaj Aziz conveyed the complaint to US Ambassador Richard Olson.

The US Defence Department’s report, ‘Progress Towards Security and Stability in Afghanistan’, said militants continue to enjoy safe havens in Pakistan.

According to Pentagon, the fighters are used as a hedge against Islamabad’s loss of influence in Afghanistan and as a counterweight to India’s superior military.

#ANS2014 

#afghanistan, #islamabad, #militants, #pakistan

PAKISTAN: ‘ Flooding and Monsoons Displace Two Million People as Humanitarian Crisis Grows ‘

#AceWorldNews – PAKISTAN (Islamabad)- September 14 – Spa Authorities were struggling 

Saturday to rescue thousands of people stranded by floods in more than 100 villages in central Pakistan, dpa quoted officials as saying.

Pakistan Floods

Several artificial breaches were created along the protective embankments of Chenab river to divert flood-water away from the historic city of Multan, civilian administrator Zahid Saleem said.

He said the threat to the city was almost over, but the diversion of water has affected 126 small villages and hamlets.

Thousands of relief workers, policemen and soldiers were working to evacuate areas and deliver relief supplies, state-run Pakistan Television reported.

The flooding began September 03 due to heavy monsoon rains.

About 280 people have been killed in the eastern province of Punjab province, Pakistan-administered Kashmir and the semi-autonomous Gilgit-Baltistan regions in the north, National Disaster Management Authority official Ahmed Kamal said.

More than 2 million people have been displaced.

The disaster agency said the flooding would continue for at least another week before the excessive water could drain out through the southern province of Sindh.

#ANS2014

#chenab, #islamabad, #kashmir, #multan, #pakistan, #punjab, #sindh, #villages

' Prominent Cleric and Activist ' Tahirul ul-Qadri ' of the Pakistan Awami Tehreek Arrives in Pakistan as Supporters Clash with Police '

#AceNewsServices – PAKISTAN (Islamabad) – June 23 – A prominent cleric landed in Pakistan on Monday as his supporters clashed with police in Islamabad.

​(Arrival of Cleric and Activist Tahirul Qadri)

The plane carrying Tahirul Qadri circled above Benazir Bhutto International Airport near Islamabad for an hour and a half before it was diverted to the eastern city of Lahore, Reuters said. Qadri, a Pakistani preacher turned political activist who usually lives in Canada, is a divisive figure in Pakistan.

​(Supporters Clash with Police)

He made headlines last year when he led mass rallies against the previous Pakistani government.

​Some have speculated that the country’s armed forces are using him as a proxy in their efforts to sideline the civilian government.

​On 25 May 1989, Qadri founded a political party, Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT). This party aims to introduce the culture of democracy, promote economic stability, and improve the state of human rights, justice, and women’s roles in Pakistan. The PAT also aims to remove corruption from Pakistani politics. Its official website contains its formal manifesto. In 1990, Qadri participated in the national election.

​(Tahirul ul-Qadri Giving Interview on his Political Ideas)

In 1991, PAT and TNFJ (Tehreek-e-Nifaz-e-Fiqh-e-Jafria A shia political group), now known as Tehreek-e-Jafria, introduced the idea of political working relationship.


(From 1989 to 1993, Qadri Continuously Worked as an Opposition Leader)

He was also elected as a Member of the National Assembly for his constituency. On 29 November 2004, Qadri announced his resignation as a Member of the National Assembly. Qadri views an Islamic state as a Muslim-majority country which respects freedom, the rule of law, global human rights (including religious freedom), social welfare, women’s rights and the rights of minorities.


​(Announces Madinah as Political Unit)

He also claims that the Constitution of Medina "declared the state of Madinah as a political unit". He also mentions that the Constitution declared the "indivisible composition of the Muslim nation (Ummah)". With respect to the Constitution of Medina, Qadri says: "This was the constitution, which provided the guarantee of fundamental human rights in our history." He believes that "a constitution is a man-made law and by no means it can be declared superior to a God-made law."


​(Constitution of Medina )

Qadri apparently made contradictory statements regarding his role in the making of Pakistan’s blasphemy Law. In an Urdu-language speech he said: "I would like to lift the veil that this blasphemy law … it was I who had this law made, that no matter who commits blasphemy, whether Muslim or Non-Muslim, man or woman, Christian or Jew, whoever commits blasphemy should be killed like a dog!" Yet in another video he says: "Whatever the Law of blasphemy is, is not applicable on non Muslims, is not applicable on Jews, Christians, and any other non-Muslims.

​I was never a part of shaping this law in the parliament made by Zia-ul-Haq –

Story of Pakistan

Zia-ul-Haq died in an air crash near Bhawalpur on August 17, 1988. The accident proved to be very costly for the country as almost the entire military elite of Pakistan was on-board.

Though United States’ Ambassador to Pakistan was also killed in the misfortune, yet many do not rule out U. S. involvement in the sabotage.

They believe that United States could not afford Pakistan to oppose Geneva Accord and thus they removed the biggest hurdle in their way. The remains of Zia-ul-Haq were buried in the premises of Faisal Mosque, Islamabad.

His death brought a large number of mourners to attend his funeral, including a large number of Afghanis, which proved to be one of the biggest in the history of the country.

During his rule, Zia-ul-Haq tried his utmost to maintain close ties with the Muslim World. He made vigorous efforts along with other Muslim States to bring an end to the war between Iran and Iraq.

Pakistan joined the Non-Aligned Movement in 1979 during Zia-ul-Haq’s term.

He also fought a war by proxy in Afghanistan and saved Pakistan from a direct war with Soviet Union.

#ANS2014

#afghanistan, #islamabad, #pakistan, #soviet-union

” Nawaz Sharif Instructs Release of One Hundred and Fifty One Prisoners ”

#AceNewsServices – May 25 – (Dawn) – ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif Sunday instructed the release of 151 Indian prisoners currently detained in Pakistani jails and handing over of 57 fishing boats in Pakistan’s custody, ahead of his historic visit to New Delhi to attend Narendra Modi’s swearing-in as premier..

In accordance with these instructions, the prisoners would be handed over on Monday morning to the Indian authorities at Wagah/Attari border, says a press release by Prime Minister’s Office.

Pakistan is releasing all those fishermen whose status as Indian nationals has been confirmed by the Indian authorities.

Handing over of the boats is also being coordinated with the Indian government. Islamabad’s move to free the prisoners, mostly fishermen accused of violating Pakistan’s territorial waters, was welcomed by India as a diplomatic gesture ahead of the inauguration Monday.

India’s foreign ministry said Pakistan had notified New Delhi of its intention to free the prisoners as a “goodwill gesture” to coincide with the swearing-in.

“It’s always good to welcome back our prisoners who have been in custody for some time,” foreign ministry spokesman Syed Akbaruddin told CNN-IBN television network.

Akbaruddin also applauded in a tweet Sri Lanka’s decision to release five Indians detained for allegedly illegally fishing in the island’s waters.

Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapakse ordered the release before his visit to Delhi for the ceremony, his office said in Colombo.

Similarly, this is the first time in many years that any side has decided to release the boats of these fishermen and it is Pakistan that has decided to take the lead in this direction.

Pakistan has always held that the issue of prisoners between both the countries was a humanitarian one and should be taken in the same spirit.

According to figures, there were 521 Pakistani prisoners in India, including 168 fishermen and the Government of Pakistan hoped that they too would be able to return to their loved ones in Pakistan soon.

Courtesy of Dawn – CNN-IBN TV

#ANS2014

#islamabad

` Pakistani Police Register Case of Blasphemy Against Sixty Eight Lawyers ‘

#AceNewsServices – ISLAMABAD – May 13 – Pakistani police have registered a case of blasphemy against 68 lawyers who made a public protest after a police officer detained one of their colleagues, officials said on Tuesday, the latest in a tidal wave of such accusations flooding the country.

Blasphemy Charges Against Lawyers

Analysts say the surge in accusations is a worrying sign the nuclear-armed nation of 180 million people is becoming less tolerant as militant ideas enter mainstream politics.

The colonial-era law does not define blasphemy, but the charge carries the death penalty. Presenting evidence can be considered a new infringement, so judges are reluctant to hear cases.

Judges who free those accused of blasphemy have been attacked and two politicians who suggested reforming the law were shot dead.

Those acquitted have often been lynched.

Monday’s charges followed a protest in which lawyers shouted slogans against senior police officer Umar Daraz for allegedly illegally detaining a lawyer in the Jhang district of central Pakistan.

“Lawyers were protesting against police, using foul language and the name of the inspector,” the district’s police officer, Zeeshan Asghar, told Reuters.

One of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad, founder of the Islamic religion, was called Hazrat Umar.

A member  of a far-right sectarian party complained his religious feelings were offended because the lawyers used the name “Umar” in their protest, and lodged charges with police.

Blasphemy accusations have spiked in Pakistan recently, a 2012 study by the Islamabad-based think tank, the Center for Research and Security Studies, showed, with 80 complaints in 2011, up from a single case in 2001.

More recent figures are not available.

Blasphemy Law Speak up Get Shot

BBC News Reported: Q and A Pakistan – Blasphemy Laws  

Pakistan’s blasphemy laws carry a potential death sentence for anyone who insults Islam. Critics say they have been used to persecute minority faiths.

What are the recent controversies?

The laws have been contentious since the formation of Pakistan in 1947, but attention in recent months has been focused on a teenage girl with learning difficulties,  known as Rimsha, who was accused of desecrating the Koran. An imam was later arrested for allegedly planting evidence.

Another prominent case is that of Christian mother-of-five Asia Bibi, sentenced to death in November 2010 for insulting the Prophet Muhammad.

The following January Punjab Governor Salman Taseer – a prominent critic of the law – was assassinated by his bodyguard. The assassination divided Pakistan, with some hailing his killer as a hero.

In March 2011 Religious Minorities Minister Shahbaz Bhatti, a Christian who spoke out against the laws, was shot dead in Islamabad.

When do the laws date from?

The offences relating to religion were first  codified by India’s British rulers in 1860, and were expanded in 1927. Pakistan inherited these laws after the partition of India in 1947.

Between 1980 and 1986, a number of clauses were added to the laws by the military government of General Zia-ul Haq.

He wanted to “Islamicise” them and also legally to separate the Ahmadi community, declared non-Muslim in 1973, from the main body of Pakistan’s overwhelmingly Muslim population.

What do the laws say?

The law enacted by the British was general in nature, prescribing punishments for intentionally destroying or defiling a place or an object of worship or disturbing a religious assembly. They also made it unlawful to trespass on burial grounds or insult religious beliefs through the spoken or written word or by innuendo or visible representation.

The maximum punishment under these laws ranges from one year to 10 years in jail, with or without a fine.

Beginning in 1980, a slew of clauses was added to the chapter of religious offences in the Pakistan Penal Code. These clauses can be grouped into two categories – the anti-Ahmadi laws and the blasphemy laws.

The anti-Ahmadi laws were included in 1984. They bar the Ahmadis from calling themselves or behaving as Muslims, preaching their faith and using Islamic terms for their places of worship and religious rituals.

The blasphemy laws were created and expanded in several instalments.

In 1980, a clause was added to the law, making derogatory remarks against Islamic personages an offence, carrying a maximum punishment of three years in jail.

In 1982, another clause prescribed life imprisonment for “wilful” desecration of the Koran, the Muslim holy book. In 1986, a separate clause was inserted to punish blasphemy against the Prophet Muhammad and the penalty recommended was “death, or imprisonment for life”, in that order.

Who is affected by the laws?

The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) – a voluntary organisation – has been documenting blasphemy cases. It says that Muslims constitute the majority of those booked under these laws, followed by the Ahmadi community. According to the HRCP, since 1988 around 1,000 cases have been lodged for desecration of the Koran, while nearly 50 cases have been lodged for blasphemy against the Prophet Muhammad.

Lower courts have handed down hundreds of convictions in these cases, but nearly all of them have been reversed by the higher courts due to lack of evidence, faults in due process or obvious wrongful motives on the part of the complainants. Hundreds of Christians are among the accused – at least 12 of them were given the death sentence for blaspheming against the Prophet.

Are they fairly applied?

At the level of the lower judiciary, there is often considerable pressure on the judges to order convictions, especially in cases relating to Ahmadis and blasphemy. But most decisions fail the test of the law at the higher judicial level, where offenders are often acquitted.

One reason is that organised religious groups are able to influence lower judges more easily than judges of the higher courts, although their influence there is growing too. Second, rights groups say most cases are motivated by local rivalries which are more easily exposed by the higher judiciary than the lower courts.

Legal experts say convictions under the law regulating blasphemy against the Prophet are easier to obtain because it does not establish a link between an offence and the intention, so that even an unintentional act can also be treated as a wilful offence.

Do most Pakistanis support the laws?

A large majority of Pakistani people support the idea that blasphemers should be punished, but there is a little understanding of what the religious scripture says as opposed to how the modern-day law is codified.

The response to recent events suggests that they largely believe the law, as codified by the military regime of General Zia-ul Haq back in the 1980s, is in fact straight out of the Koran and therefore is not man-made.

The organised religious groups are promoting this view and have been able to mobilise mass support in their favour. Their highest point came when the assassin of Governor Salman Taseer in 2011 was hailed as a hero by a large section of people across the country.

Why do the authorities appear reluctant to amend them?

Amending the blasphemy laws has been on the agenda of nearly all the popular secular parties. But none of them has made much progress – principally because of the sensitivities over the issue, but also because no major party wants to antagonise the religious parties which have on numerous occasions proved capable of bringing large numbers of protesters on to the streets.

In 2010, a member of the ruling Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), Sherry Rehman, introduced a private bill to amend the blasphemy law. Her bill sought to change procedures of religious offences in such a way that these offences would be reported to a higher police official rather than the usual police station chief. In addition the cases would be heard directly by the higher courts instead of going through the local courts first.

The bill was passed on to a parliamentary committee for vetting. It was withdrawn in February 2011 under pressure from religious forces as well as some opposition political groups. Given the growing religious conservatism in Pakistan, the government is wary about losing public support over the issue, correspondents say.

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` Expert on Nuclear Proliferation Renews Fears of Saudi Arabia Obtaining Nuclear Technology from Pakistan ‘

#AceWorldNews – ISLAMABAD – May 09 – Mark Fitzpatrick, an expert on nuclear proliferation, renewed on Thursday fears of Saudi Arabia trying to get nuclear technology from Pakistan, saying retired Pakistani nuclear scientists could be recruited by the Saudis (Dawn) reported.

“It’s pretty clear that Saudi Arabia may be looking for a nuclear neutraliser with Iran … so some Pakistani retired scientists could be asked for help,” Mr Fitzpatrick, director of the non-proliferation and disarmament programme at the UK-based International Institute for Strategic Studies, said at the launching of his book ‘Overcoming Pakistan nuclear dangers’ at the Institute of Strategic Studies.

Mr Fitzpatrick referred to media reports suggesting that Saudi Arabia had financed Pakistan’s nuclear programme at the time of its inception and said that it could have come with implicit or explicit understanding that Pakistani nukes would be used for Saudi defence.

He said Saudis were concerned about Iranian nuclear advancements, but did not have a well-developed infrastructure to start their own.

Ace Related News:
1. Dawn – May 09 – http://tinyurl.com/otcbp9k

#ANS2014

#iran, #iranian, #islamabad, #pakistan, #saudi-arabia

` Anti-Terrorism Court Hearing has Allows Exemption and Orders Musharraf to be Present at Next Hearing ‘

#AceWorldNews – ISLAMABAD – May 09 – The anti-terrorism court in the federal capital which has been hearing the judges’ detention case granted exemption to former military ruler Gen (r) Pervez Musharraf for appearing during today’s hearing and ordered the former president to turn up at the next hearing of the case, DawnNews reported.

The request for Musharraf’s exemption submitted in the anti-terror court said the former president was suffering from a pain in the backbone due to which he could not appear in court today.

While granting the former president exemption from today’s appearance, the ATC warned of strict action against Musharraf’s guarantors in case he fails to show up for the next hearing of the case.

The court subsequently adjourned the hearing of the case to May 23.

The judges’ detention case is based on an FIR registered in August 2009 against the retired general on the complaint of Chaudhry Mohammad Aslam Ghumman advocate.

Ghumman had asked the police to initiate legal proceedings against Musharraf for detaining over 60 judges, including then chief justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry after proclamation of a state of emergency in the country on Nov 3, 2007.

Ever since his return to Pakistan prior to the May 2013 general elections, Musharraf has been facing a barrage of high-profile cases, including the Bugti murder case and the Benazir Bhutto murder case.

The federal government in Nov 2013 decided to try Musharraf under Article 6 of the Constitution and a special court was set up in the federal capital city in this regard.

He was indicted for treason on Mar 31 this year but pleaded not guilty to the charges read out against him.
He later shifted to Karachi where he has been staying since April 20, 2014 and has been undergoing treatment for his medical ailments.

Dawn

#ANS2014

#atc, #islamabad, #pakistan, #perez-musharraf

` Pakistan Summons Indian Diplomat to Lodge a Protest over Denial of Visa’s to its Pilgrims’

#AceNewsServices – ISLAMABAD – May 02 – Pakistan on Friday summoned a senior Indian diplomat to lodge a protest over the denial of visas to its nationals intending to travel to the neighbouring country for the annual Urs of Hazrat Khawaja Moinuddin Chisti at Ajmer Sharif.

According to the foreign ministry statement, the Indian Deputy High Commissioner Gopal Bag was summoned to the foreign office and a strong protest was lodged over denial of visas to 500 pilgrims.

“The visits to religious shrines in Pakistan and India are governed under the Bilateral Protocol on Visits to the Religious Shrines, 1974,” said the statement.

The foreign office spokesperson said Pakistan conveyed its deep disappointment and concern over the denial of visas by the Indian government.

“This is the fourth time that visas have been denied to Pakistani pilgrims in the last one year.

This is not only against the bilateral agreement, but also runs contrary to the efforts towards normalizing ties between the two countries and the spirit of people-to-people contacts,” spokesperson Tasnim Aslam said.

Indian Deputy High Commissioner Gopal Baghlay summoned by Pakistan over denial of visas to 500 pilgrims to visit Ajmer Sharif in Rajasthan.

Press Trust of India (http://tinyurl.com/l82z7hp
May 2, 2014

#ANS2014

#indian, #islamabad, #pakistan

` High Level Security Meeting Chaired by PM Nawaz Sharif Decides to Continue Dialogue with TTP ‘

#AceWorldNews – ISLAMABAD – April 28 – A high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif decided to continue dialogue with the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) shura and finalised the agenda for the next round of dialogue.

The meeting decided to hold parleys with the TTP on a formalised agenda, sources told Dawn.

The meeting was attended by Director-General Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lt-Gen Zaheerul Islam and army chief General Raheel Sharif.

Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan briefed the meeting on the progress made so far in the dialogue process.

“It’s high time to make talks with the TTP successful or take it to some logical conclusion,” Nisar told the meeting.

PAKISTAN NEWS – DAWN – PAKISTAN TIMES – AGENCIES

#ANS2014

#islamabad, #tehreek-e-taliban-pakistanttp

` Police Resorted to Baton-Charges and Tear-Gassing Protesters over Missing Persons issue at D-Chowk ‘

#AceNewsServices – ISLAMABAD – April 28 – (DWN) Police on Monday resorted to baton-charge and tear gassing of demonstrators protesting over the missing persons issue at D-Chowk in the federal capital city, wounding several people, DawnNews reported.

The protesters were attempting to approach the Parliament house in Islamabad’s Red Zone area.

Police resorted to baton-charging and aerial firing and also fired tear gas canisters to disperse the demonstrators as a result of which several persons fell unconscious.

The resultant clash also left six police personnel, including two women and four men, wounded.

Human right’s activist and campaigner on the missing persons issue, Amna Masood Janjua, was also arrested by police personnel.

Police tried to confiscate the cameras and other equipment, of media teams trying to cover the incident.

Television channels aired footage of several journalists who were wounded and had their equipment damaged due to the use of force by security personnel.

PAKISTAN NEWS – DAWN – MEDIA

#ANS2014

#islamabad, #pakistan

` Mualana Yousef Shah to Mediate Peace Talks with Tehreek-e Taliban Pakistan likely to Start in Two Day’s ‘

#AceWorldNews – ISLAMABAD – April 26 – Maulana Yousuf Shah, coordinator of the Taliban-nominated committee to mediate peace talks with the government, said Saturday that contact had been established with the Taliban and a meeting was expected to take place with its political Shura in two days’ time, DawnNews reported.

Speaking to DawnNews, Maulana Yousuf said the Taliban Shura had asked for two days’ time to determine a location for the meeting to take place.

He said extension of ceasefire, exchange of prisoners and other issues would be taken up in the meeting, adding that the deadlock in peace talks would end.

#ANS2014

#islamabad, #shura, #taliban, #tehreek-e-taliban-pakistanttp

` Pakistan’s Increased Violence against Security Forces has Taken its Toll on Innocent Civilian’s ‘

#AceNewsServices – ISLAMABAD – April 25 – A bomb targeting security forces killed three people and wounded 25 others in Pakistan’s south-west, officials said.

The bomb, which was rigged to a bicycle, exploded near a group of soldiers and police patrolling in a vehicle in Quetta, capital of Balochistan province.

“At least three people including two policemen were killed and 25 others wounded in the blast,” Samiullah Soomro, a senior local police official, told AFP news agency.

He said eight of the wounded, including six policemen and two Frontier Constabulary officials, were in a critical condition.

Zahid bin Maqsood, a senior local administration official, also confirmed the incident and casualties.

No one has claimed responsibility for the attack.

A powerful bomb exploded Friday in an up-scale residential area of southern Pakistan, killing at least four people, authorities said.

The attack in the neighbourhood of Clifton in Karachi, the capital of southern Sindh province, also wounded 25 people.

The bomb badly damaged several vehicles and a nearby multi-story building.

Ace Related News:
1. April 25 – http://tinyurl.com/m96a5om
2.

#ANS2014

#balochistan, #islamabad, #karachi, #pakistan, #quetta

` Pakistan Successfully Test-Fires a Short-Range-Missile Capable of Delivering a Nuclear Warhead ‘

#AceWorldNews – ISLAMABAD – April 22 – Pakistan has successfully test-fired a short-range missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead, the country’s military said.

The Hatf III Ghaznavi missile with a range of 290km was launched on Tuesday from an undisclosed location, AP reported, citing a military statement.

The test was conducted during a field training exercise.

The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee Gen. Rashad Mahmood congratulated scientists and engineers involved for the successful launch.

Pakistan became a nuclear power in 1998, and the country routinely test-fires what it claims are indigenously developed missiles.

#ANS2014

#islamabad, #pakistan

` Senate Committee in Pakistan has Unanimously Agreed to a Resolution to Restore YouTube in Pakistan ‘

#AceWorldNews – ISLAMABAD – April 21 – The Senate Functional Committee on Human Rights (HRC) in Pakistan has unanimously passed a resolution to restore YouTube in Pakistan here on Monday.

The resolution said that there was no excuse for the government to maintain its ban on YouTube as the blasphemy content still available on other social websites.

The HRC has quoted Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) regarding the issued that the PTA also demanded to remove ban on video sharing website.

The HRC further added that the issued will be raised today in the ongoing session of upper house (Senate).
The video-sharing website has been blocked in Pakistan since September 2012 over its failure to take down the “Innocence of Muslims” movie that sparked furious protests around the world.

Religion in Pakistan, where 97 per cent of the population are Muslims, is a very sensitive topic and perceived insults to the faith can spark violent reactions.

In November 2011 the telecommunications authority tried to ban early 1,700 “obscene” words from text messages, which included innocuous terms such as “lotion”, “athlete’s foot” and “idiot”.

Courtesy of Kyber News Agency

#ans2014, #islamabad, #muslims, #pakistan, #youtube

` Pakistani Government Planning New round of Talks with Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan to get Peace Process on Track ‘

#AceWorldNews – ISLAMABAD – April 18 – (DWN) – The Pakistani government is planning a fresh round of talks with Taliban negotiators at the weekend, officials said Friday, despite the militants’ refusal to extend a ceasefire called to help peace efforts.

Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said in a statement that he has called a meeting with the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan’s (TTP) talks committee on Saturday to decide how to proceed.

He said only dialogue could overcome reservations and objections, but warned there was little chance of progress without a ceasefire.

“If Taliban have certain objections, we also have reservations,” he said, adding the government pushed forward the peace process against serious logjams.

“(But) I don’t think the talks process will move forward in the absence of a ceasefire,” said Khan, who has been an ardent supporter of the talks.

He will meet the TTP’s three-man talks committee, led by Maulana Samiul Haq.

Members of the government negotiating team are also likely to attend Saturday’s talks, a senior official told AFP.

#ANS2014

#islamabad, #pakistani, #tehreek-e-taliban-pakistanttp

` Contingent of 186 Elite Force Commandos of Punjab Police Arrive in Capital City on Rumours of Terrorism Threats’

#AceWorldNews – ISLAMABAD – April 13 – (DWN) – A contingent of 186 Elite Force commandos of Punjab police have arrived in the capital city to enhance security measures following two terrorism incidents within six weeks, the police said.

Another contingent of 40 personnel of the force will arrive in Islamabad soon, they added.

Apart from assigning them patrol duties at sensitive areas, separate teams will be deployed at different spots of the city, along with the Rangers and police, to react immediately and reach the trouble spot within a short time.

The personnel were demanded by the capital police for joint patrolling.

“We are expecting worse situations after the two terrorism incidents,” a police officer said, adding that there were intelligence reports that terrorism, in future, would be more lethal and brutal in the city compared to the previous strikes.

A security alert was issued on April 3, stating that the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) had planned to carry out terrorist attacks in three cities – Islamabad, Rawalpindi and Wah Cantonment – by using the name of another outfit, the officer said.

Preparations to prevent any untoward incident in future have already started, he said, adding that during the preparation it was identified that due to unavailability of technical support, it might be difficult to counter terrorism.

#ANS2014

#afghanistan, #islamabad, #punjab, #rawalpindi, #tehreek-e-taliban-pakistanttp

` United Baloch Army Separatist Group claims `Responsibility ' for ` Rawalpindi Train ' Explosion in Quetta '

#AceNewsServices – ISLAMABAD/QUETTA – April 09 – (DAWN) – United Baloch Army (UBA) – a separatist militant outfit in Balochistan – has claimed responsibility of the deadly terrorist attack in Sabzi Mandi area of the capital city that killed at least 24 people and wounded more than 115 on Wednesday.

Speaking to media representatives over telephone, spokesman for UBA Mureed Baloch said the rebel Baloch group has carried out the attack in retaliation to military’s ongoing operation in Balochistan’s Kalat district.

The United Baloch Army had also claimed responsibility of deadly train attack in Sibi yesterday. At least 17 people, two women and four children among them, burned to death and over 45 were injured in a powerful explosion in a carriage of a Rawalpindi-bound train at the Sibi station on Tuesday.

Acting Inspector General of Islamabad police, Khalid Khattak, said that at least two dozen people had died and more than a hundred wounded in today’s place early morning explosion in Islamabad’s vegetable market.

Police and rescue teams rushed to the site of the incident after the explosion occurred.

Initial reports suggest that the explosive material was planted inside a box containing fruits.

Police said that a remote controlled bomb containing five kilograms of explosive material was used in the blast.

Ace Related News – April 08 – 10.32 GMT – #AceWorldNews – QUETTA – April 08 – (DWN) – A blast in a train at Balochistan’s Sibi railway station on Tuesday killed at least four persons and wounded several others, DawnNews reported.http://wp.me/p165ui-4Hf

#ANS2014

#balochistan, #islamabad, #quetta, #rawalpindi, #united-baloch-armyuba

` Secret Agencies `Alert Police ‘ that `Militants Opposed ‘ to `Tehrik-i-Taliban Peace Talks’ are `Planning ‘ Terrorist Attacks ‘

#AceNewsServices – ISLAMABAD – April 09 – (DAWN) – Secret agencies have alerted the police that militants opposed to the government-Tehrik-i-Taliban peace talks are planning terrorist activities in Islamabad, Peshawar and Quetta, according to police and interior ministry officials.

They did not know when the malignant elements would strike, but the officials confided to Dawn that a new group, Ansarul Hind, would claim responsibility for the attacks.

Their intelligence sources, who raised the alert on April 3, said the TTP leadership had wished its informal affiliates to create the so far unheard of group.

Despite the possibility that the TTP sympathisers may be trying to pressurise the government by raising the threat of terrorist attacks in the three cities, the authorities took the threat seriously, police sources said.

“Although peace talks are in progress, we are taking necessary measures to counter terrorism in the cities,” said one official.

“Law enforcing agencies will be the main target of the terrorists, and in the case of their failure, any other official installation or public place.”

“TTP will choose the targets and the informal groups under its umbrella will provide support to the Ansarul Hind activists with weapons and other materials,” he added.

Security sources say the scenario looks similar to the terrorist attacks that quickly followed the announcement of a month-long ceasefire by the TTP last month. The most audacious of them was the bomb-and-gun attack on the district courts complex in Islamabad on March 3, which was claimed by Ahararul Hind group.

That group was heard of for the first time on February 9 when it sent emails to media outlets that it shared the ideology of the TTP but opposed it negotiating peace with the Pakistan government.

Its ownership of the March 3 attack gave rise to speculation that the Ahrarul Hind was affiliated with the Al Qaeda.

ANS2014

#ans2014, #activists, #ansarul-hind, #islamabad, #peshawar, #quetta, #tehreek-e-taliban-pakistanttp

Explosion in `Pakistan’s ‘ Busiest Market in Islamabad Kills 23 and Injures 30 more with a Suspected Arrested ‘

#AceWorldNews – ISLAMABAD, April 09 – At least 23 have been killed and more than 30 injured in an explosion at the market in Pakistan’s capital Islamabad, the media reported on Wednesday.

An explosive device could have been operated remotely.

The police have arrested a suspect in on the scene.

No group has yet claimed the responsibility for the attack. The authorities suspect extremist groups of trying to jeopardize negotiations between Pakistani Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and the Taliban.

Earlier, Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan(TTP) organization announced ceasefire for the period of negotiations with Islamabad. The ceasefire ends on April 10.

#ANS2014

#islamabad, #pakistan, #prime-minister-nawaz-sharif, #taliban, #tehreek-e-taliban-pakistanttp