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Pakistan, UAE FMs urge Afghan Taliban to ‘guarantee women’s rights’

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  • UAE FM discusses Taliban step to ban varsity education for girls. 
  • FM Bilawal holds phone call discusion with UAE counterpart . 
  • Both leaders reaffirm support to peace in Afghanistan. 

Foreign Ministers of Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday urged the Afghan Taliban to “guarantee women’s rights, as well as the importance of full and equal participation of women and girls in all aspects of life”.

UAE’s top diplomat and called Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari discussed developments in Afghanistan and the Taliban’s decision to ban the education of girls and women in the country’s universities during a telephone call.

Both leaders emphasised that Islam has accorded women a privileged position, and safeguarded their rights

“They affirmed the need to guarantee women’s rights, as well as the importance of full and equal participation of women and girls in all aspects of life,” said the Foreign Office in a statement. 

During the phone call, both foreign ministers also underscored their firm position in support of security, stability, and peace in Afghanistan. They also called for the advancement of international efforts aimed at building a more sustainable future for the Afghan people.

Taliban ban university education for girls

On December 20, Afghanistan’s Taliban-run higher education ministry suspended access to universities by female students until further notice, drawing strong condemnation from the United States, Britain and the United Nations.

A letter, confirmed by a spokesperson for the higher education ministry, instructed Afghan public and private universities to suspend access to female students immediately, in accordance with a Cabinet decision.

The announcement by the Taliban administration, which has not been internationally recognised, came as the United Nations Security Council met in New York on Afghanistan.

Foreign governments, including the United States, have said that a change in policies on women’s education is needed before it can consider formally recognising the Taliban-run administration, which is also subject to heavy sanctions.

Pakistan urges Taliban to reverse decision 

Condemning the decision to suspend university and higher education for female students in Afghanistan, Pakistan urged the Afghan authorities to revisit the ruling.

“Pakistan is disappointed to learn about the suspension of university and higher education for female students in Afghanistan,” an official statement from the Foreign Office read, adding that Pakistan’s position on the issue has been “clear and consistent”.

The FO added that “every man and woman has the inherent right to education in accordance with the injunctions of Islam.”

Female university students in Afghanistan were turned away from campuses on Wednesday after the Taliban-run administration said women would be suspended from tertiary education.

The decision to bar women was announced on Tuesday evening in a letter to universities from the higher education ministry, drawing condemnation from foreign governments and the United Nations.

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Zaidong, the ambassador, said China will fully back Pakistan’s counterterrorism operations.

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Reaffirming on Thursday that China will provide Pakistan with unwavering support in its fight against terrorism is Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Jiang Zaidong.

In an interview that was broadcast on television, the ambassador promised to cooperate with Pakistan and said that China will protect the interests and safety of the citizens of the two friendly nations.

Zaidong underscored that efforts to undermine the two nations’ bilateral relationship would be thwarted by China’s cooperation with Pakistan.

Also, he emphasized how crucial China-Pakistan relations have become strategically given the changing nature of the world.

In highlighting the transformative impact of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the ambassador reaffirmed his nation’s commitment to seeing it through.

In addition to creating thousands of employment, he said, “the CPEC has facilitated significant advancements in power generation and transportation infrastructure with over $25 billion in direct investments and substantial infrastructure development.”

Zaidong stressed the value of sharing ideas and knowledge between Pakistan and China, acknowledging their shared security objectives.

Stressing that both countries have a common future, he envisioned their partnership having a greater social impact.

Concerning the terrorist attack on Chinese nationals [working on the Dasu dam], the ambassador expressed gratitude to the Pakistani people for their condolences and sympathy and commended the government for its prompt action.

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Mild rain in Lahore improves the weather

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Early on Friday, light rain in the province capital Lahore and its surrounding areas improved the weather.

But rain also led to power outages in several areas of Lahore, as multiple feeders of the Lahore Electric Supply Company (LESCO) blew, leaving whole sections of the city without power.

Details show that rain was observed in a number of locations throughout the city, including Model Town, Gulberg, Garden Town, Mall Road, Lakshmi Chowk, Gulshan Ravi, Jail Road, and Sanda.

However, the Met Office has forecasted an additional day of rain for the city during the next 24.

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The government will begin coordinated action against lawbreakers in the Katcha region

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On Friday, Mohsin Naqvi, the interior minister, announced that the government would begin a coordinated operation in the Katcha region to eradicate the miscreants for good.

He stated that collaborative efforts in the Katcha region will make use of contemporary technologies, including drones.

According to Mohsin Naqvi, all security agencies, including the police, should make sure that SOPs are fully implemented in order to protect Chinese nationals living in Pakistan.

He declared that any carelessness in this respect will not be accepted at all while presiding over a meeting to review the National Action Plan’s implementation at NACTA headquarters in Islamabad.

According to Naqvi, failure to follow the SOPs for the safety of foreign nationals will result in severe disciplinary action.

“We have to outfit our departments with cutting-edge technology to eradicate terrorism,” stated the interior minister. He declared that the provinces will receive all the assistance from the federation in this area.

Anti-state forces will be permanently driven out of the Katcha region, according to Naqvi. The interior minister expressed satisfaction with the anti-smuggling operations and stated that all ministries need to make sure that smugglers face stern legal action.

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