Pakistan arrests top tier of PTI leaders including former FM Qureshi
Pakistan government has arrested scores of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) members including top leaders such as Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Fawad Chaudhry and Asad Umar over the past 24 hours amid tightened security following countrywide protests against ex-prime minister Imran Khan’s arrest.
Qureshi was arrested in the early hours of Thursday morning.
Islamabad police spokesperson confirmed that scores of PTI leaders, including Qureshi, Umar, Fawad , Jamshed Iqbal Cheema, Falak Naz Chitrali, Mussarat Jamshed Cheema, and Maleeka Bukhari, were arrested, Geo TV reported.
“All arrests were carried out after completing the legal requirements,” the spokesperson said, warning that more arrests are expected.
Former foreign minister Qureshi, who is Khan’s deputy, had earlier expressed his shock over around 50 casualties in protests that erupted after the arrest of Khan in Islamabad.
He noted that a worthwhile cause requires sacrifices and the PTI and its workers will continue their struggle for such a worthy cause.
“All organizations, ticket holders, office-holders are requested not to lose heart and stay put in the field,” he advised party cadres. “We have not taken the law into our hands before, and we will not do so in the future as well.”
When police arrived at his home, he recorded a statement, saying: “According to my information, the police have come to arrest me. I want to leave a message.”
“The Tehreek-e-Insaf is a movement for real freedom, and everybody has contributed to it,” he stressed.
“Khan entrusted me with this responsibility. I have been trying to fulfill this responsibility, and I have shared it to the best of my ability.”
Qureshi asked PTI workers to keep up their struggle for real freedom. “Remain on your marks in this great cause until Khan is released,” he asserted.
Geo TV reported that on Wednesday, the top tier of PTI leadership, including PTI’s Secretary General Umar, ex-governor Omer Sarfraz Cheema and party’s Senior Vice President Fawad, was arrested.
PTI’s senior leader Asad Umar was rounded up from the premises of the Islamabad High Court.
According to reports, nearly 1,000 PTI workers, including Cheema and Fawad have been arrested.
According to police, so far, 1,386 PTI workers have been arrested in Punjab on the charges of vandalism, violence and arson of public and private properties.
Pakistan, Russia launch direct shipping service
Pakistan and Russia have launched a direct shipping service, for their first time in their bilateral trade history, which Islamabad and Moscow hope will boost trade ties between the two countries.
On Saturday, following an inauguration ceremony, a cargo ship carrying 36,000 tons of goods left Karachi port for St Petersburg. The ship is expected to arrive in the Russian port city in 18 days.
Later this week, a tanker carrying Russian crude oil is expected to reach Karachi.
Pakistan’s minister of state for petroleum and energy, Musaddik Malik, told the media that this is the first direct shipping line between the two countries.
“We want to make it clear Pakistan is not in anyone’s camp. We try to do trade with the USA, we are told we are in the USA camp. We do business with China, we are told we have aligned with China. The truth is we are only doing what is in the interest of Pakistan,” Malik said.
“We are only trying to get cheap oil for our energy needs from Russia,” he said.
Over 3,600 boxes of silkworms distributed to Herat farmers this year
Herat Directorate of Agriculture and Livestock says more than 3,500 boxes of silkworms have been distributed to farmers this year in Zinda Jan, Injil, Guzara and Pashtun Zarghun districts of the province.
This directorate has said that 80 percent of silk work is done in Zinda Jan district.
“We were able to grow about 3,600 boxes with the help of institutions, about 80 percent of which we have grown in Zinda Jan district,” said Khalil Ahmad, general director of Herat agriculture directorate.
“About 20 percent of silkworms have been grown in Injil, Guzara and Pashtun Zarghun districts, which has had good results and the financial status of the farmers has improved.”
The local officials said most work in the silk industry is done by women.
“Almost 60 percent of the silk industry is done by women,” said Ahmad Shah Qawami, head of the silk workers’ union for Zinda Jan district.
This year, the families who are engaged in raising silkworms hope to have good production, now that the silk season is over and many are working to separate the silk thread.
However, the farmers are not satisfied with this year’s market conditions.
“The silk market is weak this year, it was good last year, it was very advanced,” said a silk worker.
The silk industry in Herat has a history dating back 600 years, and many families have preserved this ancient profession.
Silkworms usually feed on the leaves of mulberry trees, which grow in these regions. The industry also provides a livelihood to hundreds of men and women in the area.
Two die of Congo fever in Balkh Central Hospital
Two patients died of Congo fever in Abu Ali Sinai Balkhi Hospital in Mazar-e-Sharif city, health officials said.
Reports of an outbreak of Congo fever have been recorded in a number of provinces in the north of the country.
Najibullah Tawana, head of public health of Balkh, announced the death of two people in the meeting of sectorial coordination to prevent and reduce diseases between humans and animals in the province.
“Last week, 10 cases of Congo disease were confirmed in Faryab and Jawzjan and [patients were] transferred to Abu Ali Sina Balkhi seminary hospital, but two of them have died,” said Tawana.
Meanwhile, Mawolavi Mohammad Nasim Abid, the deputy mayor of Mazar-e-Sharif, said that they monitor the cleanliness and compliance of butchers every day, and that animals are slaughtered in slaughterhouses built by this department.
According to him; standard facilities have been established for the slaughter of chickens to prevent the spread of various diseases.
Mawolavi Zabihullah Noorani, the head of Balkh culture and information, also asked the media to inform the people about the prevention of this disease and inform them about the harm of this deadly disease.
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