Pakistan says soldier, 4 militants killed near Afghan border

A Pakistani army soldier stands guard on a border terminal in Ghulam Khan, a town in North Waziristan, on the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan, on Jan. 27, 2019. (AFP/File)
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Updated 22 November 2020

Pakistan says soldier, 4 militants killed near Afghan border

  • Two soldiers were also injured during the raid in the Spinwam area of North Waziristan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province
  • Separately, in the disputed region of Kashmir, a Pakistani official said Indian cross-border firing killed a 7-year-old girl and wounded 10 villagers

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan's military said a soldier and four militants were killed Sunday in a shootout during a raid near the border with Afghanistan.
The military said two soldiers were also injured during the raid in the Spinwam area of North Waziristan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
North Waziristan served as a headquarters for local and foreign militants until 2017, when the army said it had cleared the mountainous region of insurgents following several operations. The region still sees sporadic attacks, mainly targeting security forces.
Such incidents have raised fears that the Pakistani Taliban are regrouping.
Separately, in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir, a Pakistani official said Indian cross-border firing killed a 7-year-old girl and wounded 10 villagers.
Umar Azam, the deputy commissioner of Kotli district in Azad Kashmir, said Pakistani troops returned fire across the border.
There was no immediate comment from India.
The fighting came amid increasing tensions between the nuclear-armed South Asian neighbors.
Earlier this month, Pakistani and Indian troops exchanged fire across the frontier, leaving 12 people dead, including three Indian and one Pakistani soldier, and wounding at least 36 on both sides. The fatalities were some of the highest reported in recent years.
Since gaining independence from Britain in 1947, Pakistan and India have fought two of their three wars over Kashmir, which is split between them and claimed by both in its entirety.
Pakistan and India routinely accuse each other of unprovoked attacks along the tense Kashmir frontier in violation of a 2003 ceasefire agreement.


UNGA adopts Pakistan-sponsored resolution on respect for ‘sacred religious symbols’

Updated 18 min 16 sec ago

UNGA adopts Pakistan-sponsored resolution on respect for ‘sacred religious symbols’

  • Protests broke out in several Muslim countries, including Pakistan last month, over cartoons mocking the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) 
  • Deliberate vilification and negative stereotyping of Islam perpetuates ‘clash of civilizations,’ Pakistan’s envoy to the UN says

ISLAMABAD: Despite opposition from the European Union and other western nations and India, the UN General Assembly Wednesday adopted a Pakistan and Philippines sponsored resolution on inter-religious dialogue that emphasized the need to respect “sacred religious symbols,” Pakistan’s state news agency reported on Thursday. 

The resolution received a majority of 90 votes, none against, with 52 abstentions, APP said.

Protests broke out in several Muslim countries, including Pakistan last month, over France’s response to a deadly attack in October on a teacher who showed cartoons mocking the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) to pupils during a civics lesson.

For Muslims, depictions of the Prophet are blasphemous.

Pakistan has condemned the recent re-printing of the cartoons. The French president has paid tribute to the murdered teacher, fueling further anger in the Muslim world. 

“Facing strong opposition from the powerful western bloc mainly based on freedom of expression, the Pakistan Mission worked hard to rally the OIC [Organization of Islamic Cooperation] and other developing countries to garner support for inclusion of new elements in the resolution,” APP reported. 

Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN, Munir Akram, referred to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s repeated calls to the international community and the United Nations to counter Islamophobia and promote respect for religious sensitivities.

“Ambassador Akram also emphasized that the deliberate “vilification and negative stereotyping of adherents of one of the largest religions in the world –Islam — only perpetuates dangerous self-fulfilling prophecies such as the ‘clash of civilizations’ and must be addressed on urgent basis,” APP quoted the ambassador as saying. 

“After some intensive lobbying, the resolution acknowledges — for the first time — the significance and respect for religious symbols,” the state news agency added. “It also stressed that the exercise of the right to freedom of expression carries with it special duties and responsibilities, and must therefore be subjected to legitimate restrictions.”

“The resolution condemned any advocacy of religious hatred that constitutes incitement to violence or discrimination,” APP said, “and underlines the importance of interrelgious and intercultural dialogue as a valuable tool for promoting social cohesion, and peace and development in the world.”