Lifestyle • Travel
Ten Nepalese make first winter ascent of K2
Ten Nepalese make first winter ascent of K2
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

For the first time in history, mountaineers have climbed K2 in winter. The 8611-meter peak in the Karakoram in Pakistan is the second-highest mountain in the world and is considered extremely difficult. The group of Sherpas had paused at a point 70 meters from the summit to wait for each other before entering the world's history books together.

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • Fashion
Report: Pakistani workers make clothes way under minimum wage that are sold by Boohoo
Report: Pakistani workers make clothes way under minimum wage that are sold by Boohoo
Credit: / J Williams

Getting paid 10,000PKR (£47) a month, well below the legal monthly minimum wage for unskilled labour of 17,500PKR, workers in Pakistan in two factories made clothes for the fast fasion rand Boohoo according to an investigative report by the Guardian.

Video material also shows work conditions that pose potential safety issues.

Regional News • World
Karima Baloch, Pakistani human rights activist, found dead in Canada - foul play not ruled out
Karima Baloch, Pakistani human rights activist, found dead in Canada - foul play not ruled out
Credit: @KarimaBaloch via Twitter

The body of 37-year-old Karima Baloch, a Pakistani human rights activist, was found in Toronto, Canada, where she lived for the past five years in exile. Baloch was a critic of the Pakistani military and state and was granted asylum in Canada in 2016 after being threatened by Pakistani authorities.

Police said there were "not believed to be any suspicious circumstances", but her husband, Pakistani activist Hammal Haider, reported that she had received threats prior to her death and that he didn't believe that her death was "an act of suicide".

"I can’t believe that it’s an act of suicide. She was a strong lady, and she left home in a good mood. We can’t rule out foul play as she has been under threats. She left Pakistan as her home was raided more than twice. Her uncle was killed. She was threatened to leave activism and political activities, but she did not and fled to Canada," so her husband.

Technology • Internet & Web
Pakistan to reverse TikTok block after the company vows to moderate content
Pakistan to reverse TikTok block after the company vows to moderate content
Credit: Illustration: Pendect, LogoTikTok (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

The Pakistani government decided to lift the ban on TikTok after the Chinese company agreed to moderate content and block all accounts involved in spreading "obscenity and immorality".

The spokesman for the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) announced on Monday: "TikTok has agreed to moderate accounts in accordance with local laws."

TikTok was the third-most-popular app in the country over the past 12 months, just behind WhatsApp and Facebook, with some 20 million monthly accounts users.

Regional News • Asia
Pakistan also bans TikTok
Pakistan also bans TikTok
Credit: Kon Karampelas

Pakistan officials announced Friday a ban on TikTok after receiving complaints of "immoral and indecent" content on the popular video-sharing app.

In a press release, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority stated that given a "number of complaints from different segments of the society against immoral/indecent content on the video sharing application TikTok, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has issued instructions for blocking of the application."

Reuters quotes an official involved in the decision: "We have been asking them repeatedly to put in place an effective mechanism for blocking immoral and indecent content."

Regional News • Asia
Pakistan has banned datings apps Tinder and Grindr over ‘immoral’ content
Pakistan has banned datings apps Tinder and Grindr over ‘immoral’ content
Credit: / Kon Karampelas

Pakistan has blocked access to multiple dating apps, including Tinder and Grindr, in a bid to restrict "immoral" and "indecent" content.

The Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) said it issued notices to the management of Tinder, Grindr, Tagged, Skout and SayHi, seeking the removal of dating services on those platforms.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Business Insider report: Taliban sources confirm that Russia put bounties on US soldiers

According to a report from Business Insider two active Taliban commanders and one former commander have confirmed that Russia pays for bounties to attack and kill soldiers of the United States in Afghanistan.
All three sources stated that they had not participated in the program and disparaged the practice, but confirmed the existence. According to one source the groups that associate with the Taliban but are not close to the central leadership the Quetta Shura "will do anything for money, and Russia, Iran, Pakistan, and other countries will hire them for operations".

He stated that he wasn't approached by Russia himself as he was based in a different region of Afghanistan as they operate in, but regularly by Iran. According to Business Insider, an official of the NATO military intelligence has also confirmed that the practice is well-known.

Regional News • Asia
Multiple people dead after raid on Pakistani stock exchange in Karachi

Four gunmen attacked the Pakistani stock exchange in Karachi, killing at least two people and wounding others before police shot them dead. A police officer and security officials are also among those confirmed dead.

In an interview with BBC, Sindh police additional inspector general Ghulam Nabi Memon said: "The attackers came in a silver Corolla and were stopped by police at the gate outside where the exchange of fire took place,".

Militants from the Majid Brigade of the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) took responsibility for the attack, but the claim has yet to be confirmed.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
More than 30% of civilian pilots in Pakistan have fake licenses
PIA international airoplane
PIA international airoplane Credit: Shadman Samee (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0)

Ghulam Sarwar Khan, Pakistan's aviation minister, revealed 262 pilots in the country paid someone else to take the pilot license exam on their behalf. Pakistan has 860 active pilots serving its domestic airlines, including the country's flagship PIA.

Khan said that pilots holding fake licenses or degrees, working in any airline, will be grounded immediately.

Climate & Environment
Pakistan's creative fight against continuing locust plague
Pakistan's creative fight against continuing locust plague
Credit: Binemarina (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

The locust plagues that have been terrorising East Africa, India, and Pakistan in the past few months have still not disappeared. The unusual amounts of precipitation have caused the insects to reproduce 400 times faster than normal. Many fear the plagues to continue as the monsoons seasons are beginning in Pakistan and India.

Since the swarms have already destroyed tens of thousands of hectares of agricultural land, farmers in Punjab, the most important agricultural region of Pakistan, received ten euro cents for every kilogram of locust. The collected insects were then turned into chicken feed. Since this solution helps both to compensate farmers for their lost income and to eradicate the plague, the Pakistani government is now planning to expand the programme to the entire country.

Regional News • Asia • China
Passenger plane crashes near Karachi, Pakistan

A plane from the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has crashed into a residential area near Karachi in Pakistan. Currently, it's unclear if any of the 99 passengers and eight crew members have survived or what the reasons for the crash are. According to some reports the pilot had called in technical difficulties minutes before the crash.

Climate & Environment
Pakistan creates over 63,600 jobs with goal to plant billions of trees

As part of the 10 Billion Tree Tsunami program in Pakistan, the government has announced that it'll create over 63,600 "jungle workers" jobs with the goal of planting trees, setting up nurseries and protecting the planted and growing trees. Many of the jobs are specifically created in more rural areas in order to support women and unemployed daily workers that were hit by the Covid-19 recession.