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European Union pledges €1 billion Afghan aid package to 'prevent humanitarian collapse'

The EU on Tuesday pledged a one-billion-euro ($1.2-billion) aid package for Afghanistan, "to avert a major humanitarian and socio-economic collapse," the bloc's chief Ursula von der Leyen said.

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European Union pledges €1 billion Afghan aid package to 'prevent humanitarian collapse'
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The money adds 250 million euros to a 300-million-euro sum the EU previously announced for urgent humanitarian needs, with the remainder going to Afghanistan's neighbouring countries taking in Afghans fleeing Taliban rule, a statement said.

Von der Leyen made the pledge at a virtual G20 summit hosted by Italy dedicated to discussing the humanitarian and security situation in Afghanistan.

Her statement stressed that the EU funds are "direct support" for Afghans and would be channelled to international organisations working on the ground, not to the Taliban's interim government which Brussels does not recognise. 

EU development aid – different from humanitarian aid – remains frozen.

"We must do all we can to avert a major humanitarian and socioeconomic collapse in Afghanistan. We need to do it fast," von der Leyen said, observing that winter was approaching.

"We have been clear about our conditions for any engagement with the Afghan authorities, including on the respect of human rights. So far, the reports speak for themselves. But the Afghan people should not pay the price of the Taliban's actions," she said.

EU countries are wary at the prospect of a surge of Afghan asylum-seekers trying to enter the bloc, as happened in 2015 with Syrians fleeing their war. 

Brussels' calculation is that donating money to help stabilise Taliban-ruled Afghanistan and help out countries between it and Europe could stem any flow. 

Von der Leyen has said EU countries – especially those that participated in the NATO mission that hastily decamped in August as the Taliban swept to power – have a "moral duty" to help Afghans.

The one-billion-euro aid package announced will boost spending in health in Afghanistan. In the neighbouring countries it will go to help with migration management and promote cooperation in fighting terrorism, crime and migrant smuggling.

SOURCE: AFP

Faisal Ali Ghumman

Faisal Ali Ghumman is a senior editor at GNN, known for writing top quality content which garner very high readerships and has been covering every field of journalism, including politics, media, sports and scholarly articles. Faisal Ali Ghumman is nothing less than a Veteran Editor and has been writing for GNN for the past 4 months.

Pakistan

COVID-19: Pakistan sees significant decline in deaths, logs 663 new cases in 24 hours

According to National Command and Operations Center (NCOC), around 663 cases of coronavirus were reported while 11 people succumbed to the disease in the last 24 hours, taking the total death toll to 28,280.

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COVID-19: Pakistan sees significant decline in deaths, logs 663 new cases in 24 hours

Islamabad: Amid a steady decline in Covid-19 infections, Pakistan's coronavirus positivity ratio further fell to 1.66% with 663 new cases.

According to National Command and Operations Center (NCOC), around 663 cases of coronavirus were reported while 11 people succumbed to the disease in the last 24 hours, taking the total death toll to 28,280.

Pakistan is presently experiencing the fourth wave of coronavirus which is said to be deadlier and more contagious than the previous three COVID waves.

The total number of cases has reached 1,265,047.

As many as 1,210,897 patients have recovered from the disease with 2,280 critical cases.

Punjab

The number of patients swelled to 437,974 in the province with 12,849 causalities.

Sindh

The number of infections has surged to 465,819 in the province, while the death toll has reached 7,530.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

The confirmed cases have surged to 176,886 in the province with 5,686 casualties.

Balochistan

There are 33,128 confirmed cases while 352 patients have died from the infection so far.

AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan

There are 34,402 coronavirus cases in the AJK while the death toll has reached 740. On the other hand, there are 10,369 cases in GB with 186 coronavirus deaths.

Islamabad

There are 106,469 cases in the capital city while 937 people have lost their lives.  

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Pakistan

34 more succumb to COVID-19 in Pakistan; 1,656 new cases emerge 

Pakistan is presently experiencing the fourth wave of coronavirus which is said to be deadlier and more contagious than the previous three COVID waves. Today, the daily positivity rate in-country is at 3.26%.

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34 more succumb to COVID-19 in Pakistan; 1,656 new cases emerge 

Islamabad: Pakistan is presently experiencing the fourth wave of coronavirus which is said to be deadlier and more contagious than the previous three COVID waves. Today, the daily positivity rate in-country is at 3.26%.

According to National Command and Operations Center (NCOC), around 1,656 cases of coronavirus were reported while 35 people succumbed to the disease in the last 24 hours, taking the total death toll to 27,785.

The total number of cases has reached 1,249,858.

As many as 1,175,489 patients have recovered from the disease with 3,444 critical cases.

Punjab   

The number of patients swelled to 432,809 in the province with 12,672 causalities.

Sindh

The number of infections has surged to 459,392 in the province, while the death toll has reached 7,425.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

The confirmed cases have surged to 174,490 in the province with 5,571 casualties.

Balochistan

There are 32,956 confirmed cases while 349 patients have died from the infection so far.

AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan

There are 34,216 coronavirus cases in the AJK while the death toll has reached 738. On the other hand, there are 10,331 cases in GB with 184 coronavirus deaths.

Islamabad

There are 105,664 cases in the capital city while 927 people have lost their lives.

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Pakistan

Nation celebrates Eid Milad-un-Nabi (PBUH) with religious, traditional zeal

Back in history, the day was first celebrated as an official festival in Egypt, the celebrations of Eid-e-Milad became more popular during the 11th century.

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Nation celebrates Eid Milad-un-Nabi (PBUH) with religious, traditional zeal

The whole nation is celebrating Eid Milad-un-Nabi (PBUH) today (Tuesday) with traditional zeal and fervor and renewing the pledge to transform their lives in line with the Islamic principles and disseminate teachings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad Sallallah-o-Alaihe Wa Aalehe Wassallum.

The day dawned with a 31 and 21 gun salute in the federal and provincial capitals, respectively, following a night of Mahafil-e-Naat and conferences across the country.

Special prayers offered in mosques for upholding and flourishing of Islam and religious teachings, unity, solidarity, progress, and welfare of the Muslim Ummah.

To mark the annual event, state and religious organisations, Milad committees and individuals have planned a number of activities including processions, seminars, conferences and discussion programmes.

Moreover, streets and roads, as well as bazaars, shopping centres, government and private buildings have been beautifully decorated and illuminated with lights, colours and banners bearing writings about the celebration of Eid Milad-un-Nabi (SAW).

In addition, people wear green ribbons or green items of clothing, carry green flags or banners on this day. The green colour is a symbol of Islam and paradise. People also conduct activities like marches, parades, and night long prayers meetings.

Furthermore, communal meals are also offered in mosques and other community buildings.

A national Rehmatul-lil-Aalameen [Sallallah-o-Alaihe Wa Aalehe Wassallum Khatam-un-Nabiyeen] conference is being held in Islamabad today.

Several news and Current Affairs Channel will broadcast a day-long Marathon transmission on this occasion.

Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi is celebrated on the occasion of the birthday of the Prophet of Islam, Hazrat Mohammad (PBUH).

It is also known as Nabi Day, Mohammad's birthday or the Prophet's birthday.

The Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW) was born on the 12th of 573 AD in the city of Mecca. The full name of Prophet Hazrat Mohammad is Mohammad ibn Abdullah ibn Abdul Muttalib.

Back in history, the day was first celebrated as an official festival in Egypt, the celebrations of Eid-e-Milad became more popular during the 11th century.

This year, as per the Gregorian calendar, Eid Milad-Un-Nabi began on the evening of October 18, 2021, and will end on the evening of October 19, 2021.

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