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Israel-UAE deal: A timeline of the failed peace initiatives in the Middle East

JERUSALEM: The Trump-brokered deal between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Thursday is followed by decades of failed peace initiatives that were aimed to bring about harmony between Israel, Palestine and Arab countries. Most Arab nations, including the UAE, have not recognised Israel or had formal diplomatic or economic relations with it because of what they regard as...

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Hajj 2020: Pilgrims to congregate at Mount Arafat today in shadow of coronavirus

On the ninth of the Zul Hijjah month, pilgrims will arrive at the plains of the Mount Arafat on Thursday, as the Saudi Health Ministry will make special arrangements for the “downsized” Hajj amid the COVID-19 pandemic. General clinics at Arafat have been installed which will have doctors, consultants and intensive care nurses to help pilgrims. The health provisions will...

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Animal cruelty: 15-year-old boy, his friends gang rape kitten to death in Lahore

Lahore: In a horrifying incident of animal cruelty, a kitten died after being allegedly brutally gang-raped by a 15-year-old boy and his friends in Lahore in Pakistan. The incident came to light after JFK Animal Rescue And Shelter, an animal rights organisation, posted about the heinous crime of the teenagers on its Facebook handle. According to the animal rights organisation’s...

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PTA deems PUBG ‘wastage of time’ in detailed order

The state-run Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has refused to unblock the online game, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG), insisting that the game is “highly addictive” and a “wastage of time". After holding a consultative meeting with citizens, government officials and the company, Proxima Beta Ptv. Ltd, the authority released a detailed order on July 23. In the order, the PTA ruled that...

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Coronavirus: Scaled-down Hajj to begin from Wednesday

MAKKAH: A scaled-down Hajj with only just 1,000 pilgrims due to the COVID-19 pandemic will begin on Wednesday for the first time in modern history. Up to 1,000 people residing in the kingdom will participate in the Muslim ritual, a tiny fraction of the 2.5 million that attended last year, after what many saw as an opaque selection process that...

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US announces it won’t be taking in new foreign students for ‘all-online’ courses

The US announced Friday its new policy of not taking in any new foreign students who are seeking only-online study, after the country's top universities restrained the government from its earlier decision to expel those already in the country. The policy change was announced in a statement by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. President Donald Trump has made a tough line...

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Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav not given NRO: Farogh Naseem tells NA

ISLAMABAD: Law Minister Farogh Naseem, after taking oath a few minutes earlier, told the National Assembly on Friday that the government has not given any concessions — similar to the National Reconciliation Order (NRO) — to convicted Indian spy Khulbhushan Jadhav. Naseem had arrived at the lower house of the Parliament after taking oath from President Arif Alvi to respond...

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Pakistan ranked ‘most improved country’ for security measures by US Nuclear Security Index 2020

The NTI (Nuclear Threat Initiative) Nuclear Security Index 2020 ranked Pakistan as the 'most improved country' with weapons-usable nuclear materials on Wednesday. According to the report, Pakistan improved its score by seven points with its Security and Control Measures score increasing by 25 points due to actions to strengthen its regulations. The country’s score improvement for regulatory measures was the...

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IHC deems entire state responsible for Matiullah Jan kidnapping

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Wednesday slammed police for the kidnapping of journalist Matiullah Jan, saying that the entire state was responsible for the incident. The IHC was conducting the hearing of a petition regarding the journalist's abduction. Jan was kidnapped from outside his wife's school and remained missing for about 12 hours before he returned. "The way a journalist...

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Matiullah Jan’s family says journalist has gone missing: HRCP

ISLAMABAD: Journalist Matiullah Jan's family has reported him missing, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) said on Monday. In a tweet, the commission demanded the government ensure the "safe recovery" of the journalist after reports emerged that he had gone missing in Islamabad. https://twitter.com/HRCP87/status/1285507097027923970 Jan's wife said, in an interview with the Independent Urdu, that his car was found outside...

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UAE launches mission ‘Hope’ to Mars

TOKYO: United Arab Emirates on Monday launched its first mission to Mars becoming the first Arab nation to do so. A live feed of the launch showed the rocket carrying the unmanned probe, known as "Al-Amal" in Arabic, lifting off from the Tanegashima Space Centre in southern Japan at 6:58am local time (2158 GMT). Almost exactly one hour later, the...

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After rail, India set to lose Iran gas project

After being "dropped" from a key rail project in southeastern Iran along the border with Afghanistan, India is also set to lose an ambitious gas field project in the country that had been in the pipeline for past 10 years. India's Ministry of External Affairs in a statement on Thursday said Tehran would develop the Farzad-B gas field in the...

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Indian defence minister hoping for a resolution to border row with China

India’s defence minister said on Friday he hoped talks could bring some sort of resolution to a border standoff with China that led to a deadly clash last month, though India would not cede an inch of territory. Top commanders have been holding lengthy talks near a stretch of disputed Himalayan border in the Ladakh region, where Indian and Chinese troops have...

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Bitcoin scam: Twitter accounts of Bill Gates, Obama, Musk and others hacked

A number of high profile Twitter accounts belonging to Barack Obama, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates and others were hacked on Wednesday to solicit them into sending digital currency. The list of accounts commandeered grew rapidly to include Joe Biden, Apple, Uber, bitcoin specialty firms and many others. "Tough day for us at Twitter," chief executive Jack Dorsey said...

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Trump administration reverses visa policy on foreign students

The Trump administration will not force foreign students to leave the United States even if all of their classes are to be taught online this autumn. US officials announced last week that international students at schools that had moved to online-only classes due to the coronavirus pandemic would have to leave the country if they were unable to transfer to...

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US pushes Taliban to reduce violence as deal enters ‘next phase’

The United States has said its landmark deal with the Taliban has entered the “next phase” while urging the militants to reduce rising violence to allow Afghan peace talks to begin. The two sides signed an agreement in February that saw Washington pledge to withdraw all troops from Afghanistan by the middle of next year, in return for the insurgents promising to...

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Kashmir Martyrs’ Day: PM Khan slams ‘illegal and barbaric’ Indian occupation

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan paid tribute to the people of Kashmir Monday for  laying down their lives "for freedom and today they continue to fight and defy a Hindutva supremacist regime" which is adamant on wiping out the Kashmiri people. The prime minister in his message on Kashmir Martyrs' Day, while saluting the Kashmiris for their continued struggle against...

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