Malala Yousafzai and Muhammad Qasim have a lot in common.
While United States President Barack Obama and Afghan leader Hamid Karzai scramble to solidify a peace process ahead of the 2014 withdrawal of NATO troops from Afghanistan, fears that the Taliban will use the drawdown to seize power hang like a dark cloud over civil society.
Despite impressive advancements in enrolment rates, media reports of gas attacks on girls’ schools, shoddy books, and a lack of classroom facilities continue to mar the reputation of the education system in Afghanistan.
Nearly 12 years after the United States ousted the Taliban from power, the White House announced Tuesday that the United States will begin formal talks with the militant Islamist group in Qatar later this week as part of Afghanistan's national reconciliation process.
Muzaffar Shah, a shopkeeper from Kabul, sits in a hospital waiting room, desperate for news. He has travelled nearly 300 km to get to the Khyber Teaching Hospital in Peshawar, capital of northern Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province, where his wife is now in intensive care.
Peshawar is breathing a little easier. Prime minister designate Nawaz Sharif’s offer of talks with the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has rekindled hope for peace in this Pakistan border town.
Located on a narrow street in a quiet neighbourhood in Kabul, the Sanga Amaj Women’s Treatment Centre is the only one of its kind in Afghanistan: named after the 22-year-old journalist who was assassinated in 2007, the facility caters exclusively to Kabul’s massive population of female drug addicts.
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.