Flanked by loyalists, friends, journalists and excited family members, former Pakistani premier Mian Nawaz Sharif, head of the Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N), seemed relaxed on the night of the May 11 general elections.
The road leading to the office of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) wears a forlorn look. The same deserted air hangs over the Awami National Party (ANP) headquarters here in Karachi, just hours before voting begins on Saturday in Pakistan’s long-awaited general elections.
If you can’t beat them, at least innovate. That seems to be the lesson that Pakistan’s Awami National Party (ANP) has drawn from its predicament.
Akbar Shah was sitting with his sick wife in the gynaecology ward of the Agency Headquarters Hospital in Bajaur Agency, a division of northern Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), when a bomb ripped through the facility, scattering patients, doctors and medical supplies.
Bacha Khan Markaz, a two-storey building in the northern Pakistani city of Peshawar, is abuzz with activity. Located deep in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province, whose northwestern tip borders Afghanistan, the building serves as the headquarters for the Awami National Party (ANP), which is gearing up for general elections on May 11.
The Taliban may have placed a ban on theatre, but women in Pakistan’s northern provinces won’t allow the threat of the militants’ reprisals to keep them off the stage.
Suicide bombers disguised as soldiers have stormed a court in western Afghanistan, killing at least 44 people in an attempt to free Taliban fighters standing trial, officials say.
While the Taliban’s military activities continue to plague Pakistan’s northern Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), the incessant violence has been a blessing in disguise for one creature: the falcon.
People disabled through bomb and suicide attacks by the Taliban in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and the nearby Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province are seeking support for themselves, and demanding strict action against the Taliban.
Two weeks after Afghan President Hamid Karzai demanded the withdrawal of all U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF) from Wardak province by this date, the issue remains suspended in negotiations between U.S. and Afghan governments.
The applause has continued long after the curtain came down on the last performance of Khushal Khan Khattak in the northern Pakistan city of Peshawar last month. The enthusiastic reception should have the Taliban worried.
Taliban militants have been losing grip over the handling of their would-be suicide bombers. Of late they failed to carry out their missions as planned.
The rivers in northern Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province were once thick with trout. Spanning hundreds of kilometres, these water bodies played host to the exotic fish, first introduced by the British in the early 1900s, which eventually became a staple in the diets and livelihoods of the province’s 20 million residents.
–“We demand an immediate end to the military operation in Khyber Agency because it has not brought any results during the past three years,” says Iqbal Afridi from the Pakistan Tehreek Insaf party. “The military operations are killing the local population while the militants remained unharmed.”
The new round of a terror campaign by Taliban militants against liberal politicians and health workers has led to fresh alarm within government and civil society. Many see this as a ploy to postpone elections due mid-2013.