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  1. The UK and Pakistan Army chiefs along with senior officials at GHQ, Oct 13, 2017. Photo: ISPR RAWALPINDI: UK Army Chief of General Staff (CGS) General Sir Nicholas Patrick Carter called on Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Friday. The UK CGS arrived in Pakistan today on a two-day official visit. The two army chiefs discussed matters of mutual interest, including the strengthening of bilateral security and defence cooperation between the two armies during the meeting, according to the Inter Services Public Relations. The visiting dignitary acknowledged Pakistan Army's achievements in the fight against terrorism and continued efforts for peace and stability in the region, according to the Pakistan Army's statement. He said that the UK greatly appreciates Pakistan?s sacrifices in this regard, the ISPR added. The chiefs and senior officials of the two armies also held a meeting, where the Pakistan Army's director general of military operations gave a briefing to the visiting delegation. Earlier on arrival at GHQ, General Carter laid a floral wreath at the Marytrs' Monument. "A smartly turned out contingent of Pakistan Army presented the guard of honour to the visiting dignitary," the ISPR stated further. The visiting dignitary will address participants of the National Security and War Course later today.
  2. [embed_video1 url= style=center] Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Sunday said that Pakistan and the United States are 'engaged' and 'partners' in the war against terrorism. "US officials have appreciated Pakistan's stance on Afghanistan during [high-level] meetings," Abbasi said, adding that he did not observe a 'threatening' undertone during his meetings with US representatives. The context of US officials' statements in Congress or other forums should be understood, the premier stressed during an interview on Geo News' programme Naya Pakistan. "My meetings with US officials, including a brief one with US President Donald Trump, and Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif's meetings with the US Secretary of State [Rex Tillerson] did not have any threatening undertone," Abbasi insisted. He added that the Pak-US relationship is not based on the Afghan-issue only, adding that the two countries share 70-year old diplomatic and military ties. Responding to a question if Pakistan can expect positive development from visits of US officials including Tillerson and US Secretary of Defence James Mattis, Abbasi said that both countries will present their stances on different matters and try to reach a middle ground on differing opinions.
  3. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Sunday said that Pakistan and the United States are 'engaged' and 'partners' in the war against terrorism. "US officials have appreciated Pakistan's stance on Afghanistan during [high-level] meetings," Abbasi said, adding that he did not observe a 'threatening' undertone during his meetings with US representatives. The context of US officials' statements in Congress or other forums should be understood, the premier stressed during an interview on Geo News' programme Naya Pakistan. "My meetings with US officials, including a brief one with US President Donald Trump, and Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif's meetings with the US Secretary of State [Rex Tillerson] did not have any threatening undertone," Abbasi insisted.
  4. QUETTA: FC Balochistan on Saturday recovered 1,300 kg ammunition in search operations conducted in a number of areas across the province under Operation Radd-ul-Fasaad, ISPR said in a statement. The operation was conducted in Kohlu, Ghazi Nullah and Naseerabad. In a statement issued by the military's media wing, it said that the recovered ammunition was intended for use in terror strikes in the province. SMG, rockets, grenades, and maps of sensitive sites were also recovered by the security officials. Earlier, FC Balochistan in an operation in Dera Bugti and Kohlu areas killed four terrorists during a shootout. In the operation, several militant hideouts were also destroyed, according to the ISPR. The suspected terrorists were involved in attacks on security forces and miscreant activities. The ISPR said that mines, explosive material and tools of communication were also recovered during the raid.
  5. Saiful Maluk lake. Photo: Bloomberg As security improves, annual tourist arrivals to Pakistan have more than tripled since 2013 to 1.75 million last year, while domestic travellers have increased to 38.3 million, according to the state-owned Pakistan Tourism Development Corp (PTDC). Over the same period, foreign tourist arrivals in India jumped from 6.97 million in 2013 to 8.8 million in 2016, government figures show, reported Bloomberg. The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) puts the total contribution of tourism to Pakistan?s economy at $19.4 billion last year. In ten years, the WTTC expects that to rise to $36.1 billion. The managing director of Wild Frontiers Adventure Travel Ltd., Jonny Bealby, a London-based operator that has run trips to Pakistan for two decades, said his tours to the South Asian nation are up 60 percent from last year. ?The roads have improved immeasurably reducing journey times,?? Bealby said. Since the 2014 massacre of more than 100 children at a military school, the army has neutered some insurgent groups. Swat Valley has witnessed a surge in tourism. An 80 percent increase in hotel bookings was observed last year, according to a Pakistani accommodation booking website. Many Pakistanis want to travel, but going abroad is difficult, said Jovago Asia?s CEO Nadine Malik.
  6. [embed_video1 url= style=center] RAWALPINDI: Security forces in Balochistan on Saturday averted a possible attack on a Muharram procession in Quetta, said the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR). FC Balochistan recovered a car prepared as an improvised explosive device (IED) from the Pishin district of the Balochistan. ISPR added that the "mastermind and his two accomplices were arrested". In Punjab, Rangers along with police carried out patrolling and flag marches in important areas of major cities, while the quick reaction forces have been deployed near sensitive areas. Extensive intelligence-based operations (IBOs) are being carried out in Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Multan, DG Khan, Lahore, Sialkot, Bahawalnagar, Bahawalpur and Rahim Yar Khan, said ISPR. During these operations, 27 suspects were apprehended and a cache of illegal weapons recovered.
  7. KARACHI: Rangers arrested an alleged terrorist during a search operation on Friday, according to the spokesperson of Pakistan Rangers Sindh. The suspect, identified as Maheem Khan, son of Sher Khan, has been a part of Lashkar-e-Balochistan since 2012, informed the spokesperson. Khan has been wanted in many cases of terrorism. He was involved in the attack on a vehicle of irrigation department near Hub in 2014. Moreover, he was also one of the orchestrators of a bomb blast near a cement factory in Hub, said the spokesperson. In July 2016, the suspect carried out a grenade attack on a police van in Galaxy Town. Moreover, he was also part of another grenade attack on an under-construction building on Bawany Road. The attack occurred on January 15. On April 15, Khan set on fire the car of a private university student, the spokesperson added. Arms, ammunition, bullets and explosives material have also been seized from the suspect?s possession. Two suspects dead, 25 others apprehended during raids in Karachi One suspect was killed Thursday night during a police encounter as he attempted to rob citizens in Orangi Town's Sector 9E area Moreover, an alleged criminal was shot dead, another succumbed to injuries following his arrest, and 15 others detained during various search operations being carried out early Friday morning in different localities of Karachi, Geo News reported. One suspect was killed Thursday night during a police encounter as he attempted to rob citizens in Orangi Town's Sector 9E area, police officials said.
  8. LONDON: Some of the four alleged members of a banned British neo-Nazi group arrested on Tuesday for terror offences are serving soldiers, Britain´s defence ministry said. National Action became the first far-right group to be outlawed by the government in December last year, six months after the assassination of lawmaker Jo Cox by a far-right sympathiser. The four suspects are being held "on suspicion of being concerned in the commission, preparation and instigation of acts of terrorism," British police said in a statement. Authorities did not name the four but said they were aged between 22 and 32 and came from Birmingham, Ipswich and Northampton in England and Powys in Wales. "The arrests were pre-planned and intelligence-led; there was no threat to the public´s safety," the statement said, adding that raids were also being carried out on "a number of properties". The ministry of defence later said that some of the suspects were serving soldiers, but did not reveal how many. "We can confirm that a number of serving members of the Army have been arrested under the Terrorism Act for being associated with a proscribed far right group," it said in a statement. "These arrests are the consequence of a Home Office Police Force led operation supported by the Army," it added. Cox, an MP from the main opposition Labour party, was shot and stabbed to death in her constituency by far-right nationalist Thomas Mair in June 2016. Mair shouted "Britain first!" as he killed her. National Action, which had praised Mair´s actions, was banned in December of the same year. At the time, Interior Minister Amber Rudd branded the organisation as "racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic". In June this year, van driver Darren Osborne allegedly mowed down Muslim worshippers near a London mosque, leaving one person dead. Prosecutors said Osborne was "motivated by extreme political views and a personal hatred of Muslims". He is currently in custody awaiting trial.
  9. Police officers stand guard at a police cordon next to Buckingham Palace following an incident where a man armed with a knife was arrested outside the palace following a disturbance in London on August 26, 2017. Photo: AFP LONDON: A man armed with a sword who was arrested outside Queen Elizabeth II's Buckingham Palace residence has been charged with a terror offence Thursday, London police said. Mohiussunnath Choudhury, 26, is accused of "engaging in conduct in preparation for giving effect to his intention to commit an act or acts of terrorism", Scotland Yard said in a statement. Choudhury, from Luton, north of London, was arrested outside the palace gates on Friday. Three police officers suffered minor injuries after he allegedly drove a car at officers outside Buckingham Palace and then reached for a four-foot (1.2-metre) long sword. He was charged with an offence contrary to the Terrorism Act 2006 and was due to appear in custody at London's Westminster Magistrates Court later Thursday.
  10. A Muslim man ? holding a Spanish flag and a placard reading 'I am Muslim, this criminal group does not represent us. Islam is a religion of peace and security' ? shakes the hand of a woman in Barcelona on August 26, during a march against terrorism of which the slogan was #NoTincPor (I'm Not Afraid). AFP/Pau Barrena BARCELONA: Tens of thousands of people marched through the heart of Barcelona on Saturday in a defiant display of unity against terrorism, joined by Spain's King Felipe VI ? who nonetheless was the target of jeers by Catalan separatists. The municipal police said in a Twitter post that half a million people participated in the march to commemorate last week's deadly vehicle rampage, though the figures were not confirmed by other sources. People who tended the victims of the attack were given pride of place at the front of the procession behind a large white- and-black banner that read "No tinc por" ? Catalan for "I'm not afraid". They included uniformed police officers, doctors in their white coats, firefighters wearing their helmets and residents and shop owners who rushed to help after a van struck people on the Las Ramblas boulevard, as well as taxi drivers who transported people free. "There were very difficult moments," said Montse Rovira, the city hall's head of social emergencies, who helped people who were lost or who could not find their loved ones. "No to Islamophobia" and "The best response: Peace" were among the signs on display. Marchers carried red, yellow and white flowers ? the colours of Barcelona ? as they made their way along the city's main boulevard, the Paseo de Gracia. Many also waved the red-and-yellow Catalan flag, marked with a white star, a reminder of the simmering tensions between Spain's central government and the regional separatist government of Catalonia. 'Out' The Mediterranean city has been in mourning after a driver ploughed into crowds on Las Ramblas on August 17, followed hours later by a car attack in the seaside resort town of Cambrils. Fifteen were killed in the carnage, and Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy had called on Spaniards to turn out in force to show their "love" and solidarity with Catalonia. King Felipe VI marched alongside Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and representatives of all of Spain's major political parties behind the first ranks. He is the first Spanish sovereign to take part in a demonstration since the monarchy was re-established in 1975 after the death of dictator General Francisco Franco. But both the king and Rajoy were jeered as they arrived at the march by Catalan separatists, who reject the monarchy and hope to set up an independent republic. Some protesters whistled and shouted "Out" at the king. He was also loudly heckled when his image appeared on giant TV screens set up along the march route. The king and other representatives of the Spanish state were accused by some demonstrators of hypocrisy for joining the march against terror, as they have backed arms sales to countries like Saudi Arabia which some experts blame for spawning extremists. "The solution to the problem of terrorism is not more metallic walls or more police, but cutting financing to the Islamic State groups," said Josep-Anton Montfort, a 64-year-old retired translator, referring to the group that claimed responsibility for the attacks. Tearful unity Saray Gomez, an 18-year-old who works at a flower stall right next to where the van ended its murderous rampage, said it was important "to give a message of unity and peace." "And it's important to distinguish between Islam and jihadists, because Muslims are the first to be affected." Many people wiped away tears while listening to two cellists played "Cant dels ocells" (Song of the birds), a traditional Catalan melody, at the Plaza de Catalunya near the Ramblas at the end of the march. It was famously played by the cellist Pau (Pablo) Casals, an outspoken opponent of the Franco regime, at the White House in 1961. Small rallies called at the last minute were also held in cities around Spain, including Madrid, Valencia, Vigo and Ripoll, which was home to most of the suspected terrorists involved in the attacks. In a speech delivered between sobs at the rally in Ripoll and broadcast by Catalan television, Hafida Oukabir, the sister of one of the attackers who was shot dead by police, urged people to "reject the Islamist message", calling it "a perverse ideology that has no reason or explanation."
  11. Pakistan's Ambassador to the United States Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry: Photo: File WASHINGTON: Pakistan's Ambassador to the United States Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry said on Wednesday that there are no terror safe havens in the country. Speaking at an event, Chaudhry said that Pakistan has been paying a heavy price for instability in Afghanistan for the last 38 years. ?Peace and stability in neighbouring Afghanistan is in favour of Pakistan,? he said The ambassador said that only Afghan-led dialogue can bring peace in the neighbouring country. He added that in view of ensuring stability in the region Pakistan desires to maintain a constructive dialogue with Washington, further stating that there can be no comparison of counter-terrorism initiatives taken by Pakistan. Trump backs off Afghan withdrawal, slams Pakistan over ?terrorist safe havens? Trump warns vital aid could be cut if Pakistan does not stop Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has issued a warning that Pakistan's privileged status as a major non-NATO US ally could be in question if it continues to give safe haven to extremists. "We have some leverage," Tillerson told reporters, "in terms of aid, their status as a non-NATO alliance partner ? all of that can be put on the table." "The president has been clear that we are going to attack terrorists wherever they live," Tillerson said. "We have put people on notice that if you're providing safe haven to terrorists, be warned ? we are going to engage those providing a safe haven and ask them to change what they are doing."
  12. People display flowers and candles to pay tribute to the victims of the Barcelona and Cambrils attacks on the Rambla boulevard in Barcelona on August 22, 2017, five days after the attacks that killed 15 people. AFP/Lluis Gene MADRID: A suspected member of the terror cell that unleashed carnage in Spain last week admitted to a judge on Tuesday that the extremists had planned to hit monuments in an even bigger attack. Mohamed Houli Chemlal, 21, and three others were charged with terrorist offences over the rampages in Barcelona and a seaside resort that killed 15 people and wounded more than 100. They are the only surviving suspects from a 12-man cell whose members rammed a van into pedestrians on a tourist-packed boulevard in Barcelona on Thursday. Hours later, members of the extremist group carried out a similar attack in Cambrils further south. The four were charged with "belonging to a terrorist organisation, terror-related murder and possession of explosives", said a judicial source, who spoke on condition of anonymity. Chemlal, a Spaniard, told the judge that the cell was planning "an attack on an even greater scale, targeting monuments" using bombs, according to the source. He had known of the plans for an attack "at least two months ago", he added. 'Imam wanted to blow himself up' Chemlal was injured in an accidental explosion at the group's makeshift bomb factory on Wednesday evening. One of those killed in the blast was an imam, Abdelbaki Es Satty, who is thought to have radicalised him and other young suspects. He had only survived because he was out on the porch when the blast occurred, the judicial source said. While Chemlal told the judge the imam had wanted to blow himself up, two other suspects "blamed the imam for the plot while another two denied knowing him", the source added. Earlier, police had revealed that the suspected extremists had been preparing bombs for "one or more attacks in Barcelona". Josep Lluis Trapero, head of police in Catalonia, said 120 gas canisters and traces of TATP components ? a homemade explosive that is a hallmark of Daesh that claimed the attacks ? had been found at their bomb factory. The accidental explosion in the house in Alcanar, south of Barcelona, forced the suspects to alter their plans. - Logistical support? - The suspects in court included Driss Oukabir, the older brother of Moussa who was killed by police in Cambrils on Friday along with four other suspects. Also in court were Mohamed Aallaa, one of three brothers allegedly involved, and Salh El Karib, who manages a store that allows people to make calls abroad. In court, Driss Oukabir admitted renting the van used in the Barcelona rampage, but said he did so for moving purposes. Aallaa, who owned the Audi used in Cambrils, said the car was registered under his name for insurance reasons but that his brother Said, 19, used it. Chemlal, dressed in hospital pyjamas and with his right hand bandaged, was brought in after a doctor determined he was fit for interrogation, a court spokesman told AFP. The court hearing of the four suspects caps five days of angst following the twin vehicle assaults. Spanish police shot dead Younes Abouyaaqoub, the suspected Barcelona van driver, on Monday in a dramatic end to the manhunt for the Moroccan national, who shouted "God is greatest" when he was killed. He was the last fugitive member of the cell. Besides the four men detained, the rest were killed, either by police or in the explosion in Alcanar. While Catalan police say the cell has been dismantled, investigators are trying to determine if it had logistical or other forms of support from other individuals. Questions are also arising about the group's possible international connections. Audi in Paris, imam in Belgium In Belgium, the mayor of the Vilvorde region told AFP that Satty spent time in the Brussels suburb of Machelen ? next to the city's airport ? between January and March 2016. On the other side of Brussels, the Molenbeek suburb has gained notoriety as a hotbed of international extremists after the Brussels bombings in March 2016 and the Paris attacks in November 2015. And in France, Interior Minister Gerard Collomb told BFMTV that the Audi used to kill people in Cambrils had been detected by speed cameras in the Paris region while making "a very rapid return trip" days before the Spanish attacks. Collomb is due to host Spanish counterpart Juan Ignacio Zoido on Wednesday for talks due to include anti-terrorism cooperation. At least one of the suspects also spent a night in Zurich in December, according to Swiss police, who said it was too early to speculate about any connections with Switzerland. The victims of the attacks were from three dozen countries, from as far afield as Australia, China and the United States.
  13. BARCELONA: A driver deliberately ploughed a van into pedestrians on one of Spain´s busiest streets on Thursday, in what police called a "terrorist attack". Vehicles have been used as weapons of terror several times over the past year, often by followers of the Daesh, attacking nations in the US-led coalition fighting the militants in Iraq and Syria. Bastille Day Nice attack On July 14, 2016, Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, a 31-year-old Tunisian, ploughs a 19-tonne truck into a Bastille Day crowd leaving a fireworks display in Nice on the Promenade des Anglais, killing 86 people on the famous beachfront avenue. Daesh later claims Bouhlel as one of its followers. On June 19, 20017, Adam Dzaziri, a 31-year-old radicalised militant who had sworn allegiance to the Daesh, is killed on when he rams a car loaded with guns and a gas canister into a police van on Paris´s Champs-Elysees. No one else is injured. On August 19, 2017, a 36-year-old Algerian man, named as Hamou B., drives a BMW into soldiers outside a barracks in the upmarket western Paris suburb of Levallois-Perret, injuring six. After a car chase, police shot and wounded the suspect. London targeted twice On March 22, 2017, a 52-year-old British, Khalid Masood, mows down pedestrians on Westminster Bridge near parliament and stabs a policeman, killing five people and injuring around 50 before being shot dead by police. The attack is claimed by Daesh. On June 3, the British capital is again hit when three attackers strike pedestrians with a van and go on a stabbing spree wearing fake suicide vests in bars in the London Bridge area. Eight people are killed before the assailants were shot dead by police. The attack is also claimed by the Daesh. Berlin Christmas market On December 19, 2016, Tunisian national Anis Amri, 24, hijacks a truck and slams into a crowd of people at a Christmas market in Berlin, killing 12 people and injuring 48. Amri is shot dead by Italian police in Milan four days later after traveling through several European countries. The rampage is claimed by Daesh. Stockholm shopping street An April 7, 2017 a truck attack in the Swedish capital kills five people, including an 11-year-old Swedish girl, a Briton, and one Belgian. Fifteen others are injured. An Uzbek national, Rakhmat Akilov, 39, confesses to using a stolen beer truck to mow down pedestrians on Stockholm´s busiest shopping street Drottninggatan. According to Uzbek police he had tried to join Daesh in 2015.
  14. File Photo RAWALPINDI: Pakistan Rangers Punjab have apprehended nine suspects said to be involved in the recent terrorist activities in the province, the Inter-Services Public Relations said in a statement issued on Thursday. The Rangers, in collaboration with the Punjab police, conducted intelligence-based operations (IBOs) in Lahore, Rawalpindi, and DG Khan, the statement added. During the past 24 hours, nine suspects ? allegedly suspected of having involvement in recent terrorist activities in the province ? were apprehended, it added.
  15. RAWALPINDI: The Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Tuesday chaired a security meeting in Lahore and said regional actors and hostile agencies are fully involved in using terror as a policy tool. General Bajwa also said the key to defeating terrorism is participation at the national level. "We have fought terrorism as a nation. Key to success is national participation," the Inter-Services Public Relations quoted the army chief as saying. Referring to the recent terror attacks in Kabul and Lahore, he offered Pakistan's help to Afghanistan in eliminating terrorists safe havens in their border areas. "Concurrent blasts in Kabul and Lahore are testimony to the fact of our stance that both Pakistan and Afghanistan are victims of terrorism." He added that both countries will continue to suffer if these "actors are able to use Afghanistan's territory with impunity". General Bajwa also said the Army fully supports and stands with the police and other law enforcement agencies towards performance of their role as first responders. He added that the people should report suspicious activity to the security forces. During the meeting General Bajwa said such incidents can not lower our resolve to eliminate terrorism from its roots. He was also given a detailed briefing on the ongoing security operation in the country and the attack in Lahore. The high-level huddle came after a suicide attack on Lahore's Ferozepur road martyred at least 26 people, with nine policemen among them.
  16. Clint Eastwood has cast three young Americans who stopped a terrorist attack on a high-speed train to play themselves in "The 15:17 to Paris," according to US media. Anthony Sadler, Oregon National Guardsman Alek Skarlatos and US Air Force Airman First Class Spencer Stone were traveling through Europe when they overpowered a man with an AK-47 on a Paris-bound service carrying more than 500 passengers. "Eastwood began a wide-ranging search for the actors who would portray the three Americans. The studio and Eastwood made their choices but at the 11th hour decided to have Sadler, Skarlatos and Stone portray themselves," Variety magazine reported on Tuesday. The film follows the course of the friends' lives, from the struggles of childhood through finding their footing to the series of unlikely events leading up to the thwarted attack. They leapt into action and stopped heavily armed Ayoub El Khazzani from completing an attack on the train from Brussels on August 21, 2015. The three have since been hailed as heroes both in the United States and in France, where they were awarded the Legion of Honor, the country's highest decoration. Starring alongside the real-life heroes are Jenna Fischer ("Hall Pass," TV's "The Office") and Judy Greer ("War for the Planet of the Apes") and Ray Corasani, the Hollywood Reporter said. Eastwood's last two films -- "Sully" and "American Sniper" -- were also about real-life heroics, but this is the first time he has used real life people to play their characters. He directs from a screenplay by Dorothy Blyskal, based on the book "The 15:17 to Paris: The True Story of a Terrorist, a Train, and Three American Heroes," by Sadler, Skarlatos, Stone and Jeffrey E. Stern. Eastwood, 87, is also co-producing the Warner Bros. film.
  17. KOHLU: Security forces foiled a terror plot in Kohlu district of Balochistan on Sunday as part of the ongoing Operation Radd-ul-Fasaad, Geo News reported. Intelligence agencies and levies personnel conducted an operation in tehsil Kahan of Kohlu district, according to security sources. In the operation, they seized a huge amount of explosives material including mines and weapon. Recovered weapons include a machine gun with 170 rounds, 75 mortar bombs, 14 mortar fuses, 11 anti-tanks mines, six anti-tank fuses, 1,328 rounds of light machine gun, and a satellite phone, said the security sources. Ammunition recovered in Lahore In another operation, about 47,500 bullets were recovered from a vehicle in Lahore?s Shera Kot on Sunday. Two suspects, identified as Noor Jan and Anwar Shah, were also arrested. The suspects were travelling to Lahore from Peshawar, according to the police. The police stopped the ?suspicious? vehicle at a checkpoint and recovered bullets of pistol and 9mm from it. A case has been registered and further investigation is under way.
  18. RAWALPINDI: Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Saturday presided over a high-level security meeting in the backdrop of recent spate of terrorist activities in the country, according to the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR). The COAS was briefed in detail about the recent incidents and their manifest linkages with terrorist sanctuaries in Afghanistan operating under the patronage of NDS and Indian covert agency, RAW. The meeting was held a day after three deadly attacks in Karachi, Quetta and Parachinar, killed 85 people, including 11 policemen, and wounded more than hundred others. Seven policemen among 14 killed in suicide car bombing in Quetta Nine policemen said to be among 21 injured; investigations under way Death toll from twin blasts in Parachinar rises to 67 The two back-to-back explosions occurred as people were busy shopping for Iftar and Eid in Turi Bazaar area General Bajwa said that since 9/11, Pakistan is one of the few countries which have borne the brunt of terrorism and made monumental sacrifices to effectively neutralize this menace in its state territories, the ISPR said in a statement. "Unfortunately our sacrifices against terrorism are not well acknowledged and we are often subjected to demand of 'Do More'," the statement quoted the army chief as saying. The meeting concluded that "while counter-terrorism efforts by Pakistan continue, it is time now for the other stake holders particularly Afghanistan to 'Do More'." Recent terrorist attacks linked to sanctuaries in Afghanistan: ISPR Four policemen martyred in Karachi gun attack Policemen had stopped at a local eatery for Iftar when the attack occurred The COAS reiterated that they will continue their efforts to positively contribute towards regional peace & stability, and won't allow use of the Pakistani territory against any other country, the statement said. He appreciated efforts of security forces, intelligence and law enforcement agencies in foiling countless terrorist bids under ongoing operation 'Raddul Fasaad'. General Bajwa further expressed his resolve to eliminate the menace of terrorism to ensure safety & security of Pakistan, and its resilient people, whom he said were the real strength of their valiant forces.
  19. ISLAMABAD: The United States on Saturday condemned the multiple terror attacks that shook the country on June 23 and assured Pakistan of cooperation to combat the threat of terrorism, said a statement released by the US State Department. ?We will continue to work with the Government of Pakistan and our partners across the region to combat the threat of terrorism,? said the statement. The statement also added that the US stands with the people of Pakistan in their fight against terrorism. Condolences were also offered to the victims and their families. At least 55 people were killed on June 23 when multiple terror attacks rocked Pakistan after a period of relative calm. Triple bombings in Quetta and Parachinar and a gun attack on policemen in Karachi shook the nation days before the end of Ramazan.
  20. People gather to attend a vigil outside Finsbury Park Mosque, close to the scene of a van attack in Finsbury Park, north London. Photo: AFP LONDON: Londoners bearing flowers and messages of solidarity gathered Monday at the spot where a man ploughed a van into Muslims leaving prayers at a mosque, the fourth terror strike in Britain in four months. Eleven people were injured in the attack, which took place early Monday near Finsbury Park mosque, north London, raising fears of retaliation against Muslims after recent assaults by extremists. One elderly man, who had collapsed just before the incident, was pronounced dead at the scene, but it is not yet known whether his death was directly linked to the van assault. Among the roughly 100 people at the vigil, some carried signs reading "United Against All Terror". "One of the things that all these terrorists share is a perverse ideology that wants to fuel division and divide our communities. We?re not going to let them," said Mayor Sadiq Khan, speaking after prayers at the Muslim Welfare House on Monday evening. Flowers were left at the scene where hours earlier the 47-year-old van driver was pinned down by locals and shielded from violence by an imam, before being detained by police. The driver was later arrested on suspicion of "the commission, preparation or instigation of terrorism including murder and attempted murder", the police said. The suspect was identified by British media as Darren Osborne, a father of four who lived in the Welsh capital Cardiff. As police searched a property, five residents speaking to journalists from the Press Association news agency identified images of the arrested man as their neighbour, Osborne. Security Minister Ben Wallace told BBC radio that the suspect was "not known to us". Stepped-up police presence London police chief Cressida Dick said the incident was "quite clearly an attack on Muslims" and promised a stepped-up police presence near mosques as the holy month of Ramadan draws to a close. Witness Abdiqadir Warra told AFP the van "drove at people" and that some of the victims were carried for several metres along the road. "He was shouting: ?I want to kill all Muslims?," another witness, Khalid Amin, told BBC television. The Finsbury Park Mosque said the van "deliberately mowed down Muslim men and women leaving late evening prayers" at the mosque and the nearby Muslim Welfare House shortly after midnight. Eleven people were hurt, all Muslims, with nine requiring hospital treatment. Two were in a very serious condition, police said. One Algerian man was among those injured, the north African country said. Locals pinned down the driver and the imam of the Muslim Welfare House stepped in to stop him receiving a mob beating. France and Germany quickly condemned the attack. US President Donald Trump?s daughter Ivanka expressed solidarity with the worshippers in a tweet but her father has so far not commented. Community in shock Prime Minister Theresa May, who was heavily criticised for failing to meet survivors of a devastating fire in a London tower block last week, visited Finsbury Park Mosque where she met local faith leaders. May condemned the assault as "sickening", saying Britain?s determination to fight "terrorism, extremism and hatred... must be the same, whoever is responsible". The use of a vehicle to mow down pedestrians drew horrifying parallels with this month?s London Bridge attack. In that incident, three men slammed a van into pedestrians before embarking on a stabbing spree -- an attack claimed by Daesh. In March London was hit with another car and knife rampage, that one near parliament. It was also claimed by Daesh. This time the attacker deliberately targeted Muslims, according to the police. After the London Bridge attack, the mayor?s office reported a 40-percent increase in racist incidents in the capital and a five-fold increase in anti-Muslim incidents. Mohammed Kozbar, chairman of the Finsbury Park Mosque, described the attack as "cowardly". "Our community is in shock," he said, urging people attending prayers to remain vigilant. ?Extraordinary city? It was the third major incident in the capital this month, after the London Bridge attack and last week?s devastating fire in the Grenfell Tower block, in which 79 people are thought to have died. "This is an extraordinary city of extraordinary people," May said outside Downing Street after chairing an emergency government meeting. "Diverse, welcoming, vibrant, compassionate, confident and determined never to give in to hate." Last month, a suicide bomber blew himself up outside a pop concert in Britain?s third city of Manchester, killing 22 people, many of them children. The Finsbury Park Mosque was once a notorious hub for radical extremists but has changed markedly in recent years under new management. Its former imam, Abu Hamza, was jailed for life in New York on terrorism charges in 2015. Despite the change in leadership and the focus on bolstering inter-faith relations, the mosque reported it had received a string of threatening emails and letters in the wake of the Paris attacks.
  21. Police said they arrested a man outside London's Paddington Station on Monday but added that the incident was not terrorism-related, a few hours after a van ploughed into worshippers near a mosque in the British capital. "Officers have arrested a man outside Paddington for public disorder and possessing an offensive weapon. The incident is not terror related," British Transport Police said in a statement. Video footage posted on Twitter showed officers restraining a shirtless man outside the station before taking him away. Police have said the earlier attack at the mosque, which injured 10 people, appeared to be a terrorism-incident which would make it the fourth such attack in three months in Britain.
  22. Photo: File LAHORE: The Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) late Sunday foiled a major terror attack and killed two terrorists belonging to a banned terror outfit near Lahore?s Saggian Bridge vicinity. The CTD acted upon intelligence reports received about four members of a banned terrorist organisation entering Lahore and planning to attack sensitive installations. Four motorcyclists opened fire on the CTD personnel when they were stopped late at night near Saggian Bridge. The retaliatory firing by security forces killed two terrorists, however, two of their accomplices managed to escape, the CTD said. Explosives, detonators, Primacords, Kalashnikov, pistol, and other arms were seized from the possession of the dead terrorists. ?A search operation is underway to find the fugitive terrorists,? a CTD spokesperson said
  23. Weapons, ammunition and explosives material was seized from the suspect?s possession. Photo: Geo News screen grab KARACHI: Rangers arrested on Saturday four suspects during operations in Baldia Town and Orangi Town. The suspects had made all preparations to carry out a suicide attack during the Youm-e-Ali procession in Karachi, according to the Rangers spokesperson. The alleged terrorists belong to banned outfit Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. Weapons, ammunition and explosives material was seized from the suspect?s possession. Over 5,570 police personnel and officers have been deployed across the port city to protect the participants of the processions and Majalis on Youm-e-Ali. The Sindh government on Thursday issued notifications banning pillion riding for motorcycles and scooters and the use of ?heli-cams? for media coverage on the occasion.
  24. Thousands of French football fans joined in with the English national anthem as tribute was paid to the victims of recent terror attacks in the United Kingdom prior to a friendly match in Paris on Tuesday evening. The words to 'God Save the Queen' were displayed on big screens around the Stade de France before France's meeting with England, allowing the French spectators in the crowd of close to 80,000 to sing along with their English counterparts. A minute's silence was impeccably observed by the crowd, after the teams had come out to 'Don't Look Back in Anger', the song by Manchester group Oasis which was played by the band and choir of the French Republican Guard. They were ably backed up by around 2,500 travelling English fans in one corner of the ground on a balmy night in the French capital. That song was seen as an anthem for Manchester after the English city was hit by a suicide bombing at the end of an Ariana Grande concert last month which claimed 22 lives. Another eight people, including three French nationals, were also murdered in a terror attack in London on June 3. An English flag was displayed by a section of the Stade de France crowd as the teams entered the field. Underneath the display was a banner reading: "United with the Cities of Manchester and London". The match kicked off around five minutes later than the scheduled 9pm (1900 GMT) start, after French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Theresa May had arrived at the stadium in the nick of time. Macron and May had met at the President's Elysee Palace a little earlier to discuss business ahead of the start of Brexit negotiations next week. Security was very tight around France's national stadium, as it has been for all events since a wave of terror attacks began to hit the country over the last couple of years. The game was the first meeting of the sides since November 2015, when England won 2-0 in a friendly on an emotionally charged night at Wembley. That match was played despite France being in a state of shock in the wake of the terror attacks that struck Paris just four days earlier. A total of 130 people were killed on November 13, 2015, when the Stade de France itself was one of the targets, being attacked by suicide bombers during a friendly match against Germany. On that occasion, the London crowd joined in with the singing of the French anthem, 'La Marseillaise', which was also played before English Premier League games the following weekend.
  25. LONDON: Britain braces for the final day of general election campaigning on Wednesday, after a turbulent few weeks which have shifted the political ground and been marred by terror attacks. Prime Minister Theresa May was riding high when she called a snap election on April 18, having kicked off Brexit proceedings and boasting a double-digit lead over the rival Labour party. After London attack, May faces election heat over police cuts But in recent weeks, the Conservative leader has seen her popularity wane as the political debate shifted from EU membership to domestic policy and her own record on security. "Give me your backing to lead Britain, give me the authority to speak for Britain, strengthen my hand as I fight for Britain," May urged voters on Tuesday in Stoke-on-Trent, the city that registered the highest vote for leaving the European Union. With formal Brexit talks due to start on June 19, May is hoping to sweep up supporters from the UK Independence Party as well as taking seats from Labour. The Conservatives have run a presidential-style campaign, promoting May as the "strong and stable" leader to fight Britain´s corner in Brussels and warning that Labour´s Jeremy Corbyn is not up to the task. Despite being seen as an unlikely leader -- one who has faced off a rebellion by his own MPs -- Corbyn has gained momentum during the election campaign and regularly attracts big crowds to his rallies. Labour gained a boost following the May 18 release of the Conservatives´ manifesto, outlining elderly care costs which the tabloids dubbed the "dementia tax". The pledge hit the party´s core supporters and May was forced to backtrack on capping the costs, prompting further criticism that she was unreliable. A "Liar, Liar GE2017" election protest song which targeted May and the Conservatives has made waves, reaching number four in the weekly charts on Friday. Terror attacks But even though the prime minister has faced a tougher campaign than expected, the Conservatives are still ahead in the polls. According to a poll published Tuesday by the group Survation, May´s one-time 20-point lead over Labour has shrivelled to just over a single point -- 41.6 percent to 40.4 percent. Bookmakers, meanwhile, forecast May will win an increased majority. Ladbrokes predict the Conservatives´ present majority will rise from 17 to 70 seats, while William Hill suggests a more modest increase to between 40 and 50. Since failing to predict the outcome of the last general election and the Brexit referendum, pollsters have adjusted their methodologies and broadly show the Conservatives ahead despite their lead narrowing. The final day of campaigning comes under the shadow of security concerns, following three terrorist attacks since March all involving assailants who were known to the authorities. In the most recent attack, seven people were killed on Saturday when three men drove into pedestrians and went on a stabbing spree in central London before being shot by police. Attacker Khuram Shazad Butt was known to British intelligence services, while an Italian prosecutor said Britain was notified that one of his accomplices, Youssef Zaghba, was a "possible suspect" back in March 2016. Their rampage followed a similar attack next to British parliament in March, in which assailant Khalid Masood was shot after killing five people. In the most deadly attack, Salman Abedi killed 22 people at a Manchester concert venue on May 22 when he detonated a suicide bomb. The electorate usually favours the Conservatives on security issues, but May has come under fire for her record during the six years she served as interior minister. The devastating terror attacks have also heightened public admiration for the emergency services, which have faced government cuts in recent years.