N. Korea threatens nuclear strike on White House
Pyongyang: A top-ranking North Korean military official has threatened a nuclear strike on the White House and Pentagon after accusing Washington of raising military tensions on the Korean peninsula.
The threat came from Hwang Pyong-So, director of the military's General Political Bureau, during a speech to a large military rally in Pyongyang Sunday on the anniversary of the armistice that ended the 1950-53 Korean War. Hwang, who holds the rank of vice marshal in the Korean People's Army, said a recent series of South Korea-US military drills, one of which included the deployment of a nuclear-powered US aircraft carrier, had ramped up tensions. "If the US imperialists threaten our sovereignty and survival... our troops will fire our nuclear-armed rockets at the White House and the Pentagon - the sources of all evil," Hwang said in his speech broadcast Monday on state television.
It is not the first time that North Korea's bellicose rhetoric has included threats of nuclear strikes on the continental United States and US bases in the Pacific.
But most experts believe it is still a long way from developing a viable intercontinental ballistic missile with the required range. The North has conducted three nuclear tests, but is not thought to have mastered the miniaturisation techniques necessary for mounting a warhead on a missile. - Agencies
Invoking Article 245
IHC orders production of notification copy
ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court on Monday issued notices to the secretaries of Ministries of Law, Interior and Defence as well as the Cabinet against the government's decision to call in the army into the capital and directed that a copy of the order invoking Article 245 must be presented in the court.
Chief Justive Anwar Kasi sought a reply from the secretaries on August 6, 2014.
During the hearing, IHC Bar Association President and applicant Sheikh Hasan al-Din argued that Article 245 was not even extended to insurgency hit areas and if such a step was taken, the writ of the government would weaken.
The situation in Islamabad is not so bad that such a drastic step needs to be taken, the applicant maintained. The applicant added that Article 245 can only be invoked if the civil administration fails to control the situation.
"To invoke Article 245 and give army the powers is similar to imposing a mini martial law," he added.
The applicant urged the IHC to declare the decision of the government as 'null and void'.
The chief justice noted that the government notification was not attached with the application and hence a ruling cannot be passed.
Additional Attorney General Tariq Mehmood said that even he did not possess a copy of the notification.
On this, the judged questioned as to why the AAG did not have a copy while the media already was in possession of the notification copy.
The hearing of the case will be held every day from August 6 onwards.
Provinces can call military for law and order: Ministry
ISLAMABAD: The provinces could summon military troops under Article 245 of the constitution to meet an emergency situation and for maintenance of law and order, the interior ministry said in a letter on Monday.
Federal Ministry of Interior in an advisory to the provinces said that a province would have to bear the expenses during the deployment of troops in that federating unit. The provinces will also be responsible for the arrangements for the deployment of the military, the ministry further said.
The provinces could summon the required strength of the military for assistance to the civil administration, which will be decided with mutual
consultation, the advisory added.
The interior ministry, in a letter to the chief secretaries of all four provinces, outlined the method to call armed forces when required. The letter stated that provinces can call the army when needed under Article 245 of the Constitution and details the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for doing so. According to the interior ministry's letter, the number of army officers will be subject to consultation and agreement and the amount of power given to the army in such situations will be in accordance with section 5 of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 - which is regarding the "use of armed forces and civil armed forces to prevent terrorism". The letter also states all costs and logistics of calling in army will be borne by the provinces. Anti-Terrorism Act Section 5 of the Anti-Terrorism Act allows members of armed forces to (1) Use necessary force to prevent terrorist acts after giving prior warning, it will also be lawful for any superior officer to fire or order firing upon persons against whom he is authorized to fire upon under terms outlined in the Act (2) Arrest, without warrant, any person who has committed an act of terrorism or for whom a reasonable suspicion exists that he has committed or is about to commit such an act (3) Enter and search any premises to make an arrest or to take possession of any property or weapon used or likely to be used to commit a terrorist act, without warrant.
Baloch: Rs4 lakh to be paid for completely damaged houses in NW
Bannu: Minister for States and Frontier Regions Abdul Qadir Baloch has said the federal government will not rest till complete rehabilitation of internally displaced persons to their homes in North Waziristan.
Addressing the displaced people at Bakka Kheil relief camp in Bannu on Monday, he said a survey of houses will be carried out in North Waziristan.
Cash assistance of four hundred thousand rupees will be given to those whose houses have totally been destroyed while two hundred thousand rupees to those whose houses partially got damaged. He said about fifty thousand rupees additional assistance will also be given to each displaced family on their return to their areas.
The Federal Minister assured that all the displaced families will be registered and given financial assistance in cash and ration.
Abdul Qadir Baloch said that shelter schools will also be established for the displaced children in Bannu so that they could continue their education.
The Federal Minister said the entire nation highly values the sacrifices of displaced families which can not be compensated with any amount of assistance.
The displaced persons are our heroes and stars and facing this time of trial for the peace and comfort of the entire nation. He said the government is alive to the difficulties of the IDPs and all out efforts will be made to address them. - PPI
Qureshi tells PTI MPs to submit resignations
MULTAN: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi Monday asked his party's lawmakers to submit their resignations with party chief Imran Khan which will be used at an opportune time.
Talking media representatives here, Shah Mehmood Qureshi warned the government not to create hurdles in the way of PTI's planned 'Azadi March' in Islamabad on August 14.
He said the government at the moment appears to be disconcerted but added that 'Azadi March' will be held in all circumstances. "The workers will tear apart all the barriers and reach Islamabad," he expressed his confidence.
Qureshi said other parties will also be invited to participate in PTI's march on Islamabad. He said the legal notice of Iftikhar Chaudhry has been delivered to PTI Chief Imran Khan. The PTI's legal experts will respond to the notice, he added. - INP
Imran threatens to file murder case against PM if violence erupts on March 14
BANNU/KOHAT: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan on Monday threatened to file a murder case against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif if violence was used against his party workers during the August 14 rally.
Talking to media persons Imran Khan demanded the Army should not support the government and stay neutral. He reiterated that PTI will challenge the imposition of Article 245 in the Supreme Court.
He said that Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has contacted him and agreed to meet his demands which included answers to: 1) Who scripted the victory speech of Nawaz Sharif on May 11, 2013; 2) What was the role of caretaker Punjab chief minister Najam Sethi; 3) What was the role of the then-chief justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry; 4) And lastly why returning officers were not put in palace under the Election Commission of Pakistan.
PTI chief said that he could ask Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) chief Tahirul Qadri to become a part of his 'tsunami march', however, he said he does not agree with his 'revolution' agenda.
In response to the ongoing rumours of Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan considering to join the ranks of PTI, Imran said his party's doors are always open for Nisar as he is the only person in Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) who is not a "darbari".
Imran arrived in Bannu as promised to celebrate Eid with internally displaced persons (IDPs) of North Waziristan.
While addressing the IDPs, the PTI chief at first apologised for not being able to offer Eid prayers with them because of bad weather.
He said that his party and the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government will do everything they can for people affected by the ongoing military operation in North Waziristan, adding that the entire nation is standing by them as they go through these difficult times.
Condemning Sindh and Punjab governments' decision to stop IDPs from entering their provinces, the PTI chief remarked that the IDPs were Pakistanis and were allowed to go to any part of Pakistan, further stating that it was their constitutional right.
He said that the entire nation shares the hardships of internally displaced persons (IDPs) of North Waziristan.
Imran Khan celebrated Eid with the IDPs of North Waziristan in Bannu said that the displaced persons are passing through a difficult situation. PTI chief passed some time with the IDPs and distributed gifts among them. - INP
US, EU impose ban on PIA cargo service
KARACHI: The European Union and United States have imposed ban on the PIA cargo service over improper security arrangements.
The European Union (EU) and United States authorities have written a letter to Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) to stop the airlines' cargo service in EU and the US due to lacking of security.
The national airlines has suspended its cargo service to Europe and the US after imposition of the ban.
PIA being subjected to discrimination by the United States and Europe in comparison to other airlines, Mashhood Tajwar, a spokesman of the airlines said. The airlines maintaining security according to the international standards, he claimed.
The spokesman said, the airlines was in talks with the EU and US authorities and the matter will be resolved soon. - INP
PM dedicates Eid day to valiant jawans fighting in Waziristan, IDPs
ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has dedicated the Eid day to all the valiant soldiers waging a battle to rid Waziristan of terrorism, and the internally displaced persons (IDPs), who had to leave their homes because of the operation Zarb-e-Azb.
The Prime Minister, in a message on Eidul Fitr, greeted the entire Muslim Ummah and in particular the Pakistani nation. He said Eid was a day of gratitude after the successful completion of a month of fasting in compliance with Allah's Commandment.
"We can enjoy the true happiness of Eid only when we share the joys with our poor relatives, neighbours, brothers and sisters," the Prime Minister said.
"I dedicate the auspicious day of Eid to all the valiant soldiers, who are waging a battle to rid Waziristan of terrorism and all the internally displaced persons."
The Prime Minister said the Eid day was a day of thankfulness.
"We thank Almighty Allah and pay rich tributes to all those martyrs, who have laid down their lives for the defence and security of their country."
He said it was a day of jubilation, but pointed out that "our joy will remain incomplete till the women, children and elderly uprooted from Waziristan, do not return to their homes and are fully and safely rehabilitated."
The Prime Minister said the month of Ramazan gives a lesson of patience and tolerance and urged that this one month long training must be reflected in daily practical lives.
"We must exhibit our best behaviour and it should reflect restraint and composure, and we must reach out to those, who are deprived."
"We also must try to share the joys of Eid with our relatives and neighbours, and demonstrate high moral values, so that Pakistan reflects a picture of a real civilised society."
"I pray for peace, progress and prosperity of every citizen of Pakistan and its every city - Ameen," the Prime Minister said. - APP
KARACHI: The Ruet-i-Hilal Committee announced on Monday that the moon of the month of Shawwal had been sighted and that Eidul Fitr will be celebrated on Tuesday.
The announcement was made by Chairman of the Central Ruet-i-Hilal Committee, Mufti Munib-ur-Rehman, after chairing the meeting of the committee in Karachi.
Munib said confirmations of moon sighting had been received from many parts of the country.
The Ruet-i-Hilal Committee had convened earlier in a meeting for the moon sighting.
On Monday majority of people in KP and FATA celebrated Eid after a meeting of an unofficial committee held at the Masjid Qasim Ali Khan in Peshawar announced after midnight that 44 reports of the sighting had been received from various parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the tribal areas and Monday would be the first day of Shawwal.
Religious leaders in Bajaur Agency announced they had received reports of 22 sightings. Imams in Mohmand Agency also said the Shawwal moon had been sighted.
Ulema in the Shabqadar area of Charsadda district said they had received four reports of moon-sighting of which two were deemed to be credible. Religious leaders in Lakki Marwat and Swabi districts made similar announcements. - Statesman
Imran’s politics based on lies and hatred, accuses Rashid
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan's politics is based on lies and hatred, accused Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid on Monday, Express News reported.
Referring to Imran's statement condemning Sindh and Punjab governments' decision to stop internally displaced persons (IDPs) of North Waziristan from entering their provinces, the information minister stated that there was no ban on the entry of IDPs into any province or Islamabad.
He also alleged that the PTI chief was conspiring to create hatred between the Centre and the provinces.
Rashid also said that Imran did not have the courage to speak up against terrorists.
"He does not have the moral capacity to pray for the success of Operation Zarb-e-Azb," the information minister further alleged.
Imposing Art 245 in ICT
PPP submits adjournment motion in NA
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) submitted an adjournment motion in N.A. secretariat over government's decision to impose Article 245 in ICT.
The adjournment motion was moved by the PPP MNAs Dr. Nafisa Shah, Shazia Atta Marri, Syed Naveed Qamar, Dr Azra Fazal Pechuho, Syed Ghulam Mustafa Shah and Mrs Beelam Hasnain.
The motion said that under Rule 110 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the National Assembly, 2007, we request that the proceedings of the house be adjourned to discuss the government's decision to impose
Article 245 in the capital territory of Islamabad as it reflects the failure of the civil administration, involves the total suspension of the jurisdiction of the high courts and setting up of military courts.
This is a serious issue with grave consequences and requires immediate discussion on the floor of the house. - INP
Woman killed, four injured in Lower Dir search operation
PESHAWAR: A woman was killed and her son as well as three security personnel were injured in a cross firing incident during a search operation in Lower Dir region.
There were conflicting reports regarding the incident in Lower Dir's Timergara region and the woman's death.
Official sources said security forces were conducting a search operation in Timergara when residents of the house of local property dealer Israruddin opened fire on them during a raid.
Subsequently, three security personnel were injured during the cross firing whereas Israruddin's wife was killed and his son sustained injuries.
Security forces claimed they were fired upon while they were conducting the search operation in the house. Whereas, residents said that even though they had not offered any resistance, security forces' men fired shots as a result of which the woman was killed and her son was injured.
Meanwhile, a curfew was imposed in Timergara for an indefinite period.
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