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Qatar opens Al Thumama stadium as fifth 2022 World Cup venue

The launch of the Al Thumama stadium, 12 kilometres (7.5 miles) south of the capital Doha, comes as the Gulf country seeks to operate arenas at 100 percent capacity during the World Cup.

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Qatar opens Al Thumama stadium as fifth 2022 World Cup venue
GNN Media: Representational Photo

The 40,000-seat ground, which will host groups matches during Qatar 2022 up to the quarter-finals, hosted the domestic Emir Cup final between local clubs Al Rayyan and Al Sadd as its inaugural match.

Qatar's ruler Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani and FIFA president Gianni Infantino attended the opening ceremony.

It was designed by Qatari architect Ibrahim M. Jaidah to resemble the 'gahfiya' cap, traditionally worn by men in the region.

Energy-rich Qatar has so far officially inaugurated five of the eight stadiums that will lay the stage for the first World Cup in the Middle East.

In addition to Al Thumama, Qatar has so far inaugurated new-build Ahmad Bin Ali, Al-Janoub and Education City stadiums alongside the refurbished Khalifa ground in the heart of Doha's Aspire Zone.

Ras Abu Aboud, Al Bayt, Lusail, which will host the final match in December 2022, remain to be opened.

Following the World Cup, Al Thumama's capacity will be reduced to 20,000, with a sports clinic and a boutique hotel set to open on site.

Fans were able to apply for tickets to Friday's event if they either tested positive for virus antibodies, or have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19.

Qatar, which says it vaccinated more than three quarters of its 2.75 million population, has recorded more than 238,000 infections since the beginning of the pandemic.

The country has faced criticism for its treatment of migrant workers, many of whom are involved in preparations for the World Cup, with campaigners accusing employers of exploitation and forcing labourers to work in dangerous conditions.

However, Qatari authorities insist they have done more than any country in the region to improve worker welfare and say they have "always been transparent about the health and safety of workers".

SOURCE: AFP 

Faisal Ali Ghumman

Mr. Ghumman is a seasoned journalist who has 19 years of diversified experience in print, electronic and digital media. He has worked with 92 News HD, Daily Pakistan Today, Daily The Business, Daily Dawn, Daily Times and Pakistan Observer as News Reporter, Feature Writer, Editor, Web Content Editor and Article Writer. Mr Ghumman has graduated from the Bahauddin Zakariya University Multan and is currently enrolled in M.Phil in Mass Communication at the University of Punjab.

Regional

Polling of NA 133 by-election concludes, vote counting underway

NA-133 seat fell vacant after the death of PML-N MNA Pervaiz Malik who died of heart complications on October 11.

Published by Siddra Sumreen

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Polling of NA 133 by-election concludes, vote counting underway

Lahore: Polling of NA-133 Lahore by-election has concluded and the counting of votes has begun across the 254 polling stations in the constituency, considered a "stronghold" of the PML-N.

According to details, the polling started at 8am this morning and continued till 5pm without any break after which the gates to the polling stations were closed off to any more voters.

The seat had fallen vacant after the death of PML-N leader Pervaiz Malik who died of heart complications on October 11. His wife, Shaista Pervaiz Malik is the PML-N candidate, whereas the PPP fielded Aslam Gill for the election.

Moreover, ruling party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) candidates Jamshed Iqbal Cheema has been disqualified from contesting the election on technical grounds and his appeal has been earlier rejected by the election tribunal and later by the high court.

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Pakistan

Pakistan reports 10 deaths as ongoing impact of COVID-19 weakens  

Around 336 fresh coronavirus cases emerged while 10 people succumbed to the disease in last 24 hours amid 'Omicron' threat.

Published by Mehak Javed

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Pakistan reports 10 deaths as ongoing impact of COVID-19 weakens  

Islamabad:  Amid a steady decline in Covid-19 infections, Pakistan's coronavirus positivity ratio further fell to 0.78%, the total death toll reached to 28,777. 

Around 336 fresh coronavirus cases emerged while 10 people succumbed to the disease in last 24 hours amid 'Omicron' threat.

Pakistan’s government will step up COVID-19 vaccination efforts and is expanding the criteria for vaccine booster shots, amid fears of the Omicron variant.

According to the latest figures issued by the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC), 336 persons were tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 24 hours. 

The total number of cases has reached 1,287,161. 

As many as 1,246,464 patients have recovered from the disease.

Punjab

The number of patients swelled to 443,519 in the province with 13,041 causalities.

Sindh

The number of infections has surged to 476,830 in the province, while the death toll has reached 7,626.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

The confirmed cases have surged to 180,383 in the province with 5,862 casualties.

Balochistan

There are 33,507 confirmed cases while 360 patients have died from the infection so far.

AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan

There are 34,579 coronavirus cases in the AJK while the death toll has reached 742. On the other hand, there are 10,413 cases in GB with 186 coronavirus deaths.

Islamabad

There are 107,930 cases in the capital city while 960 people have lost their lives.

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Regional

NA-133 by-polls: PML-N retains seat for fourth time 

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) Shaista Pervaiz Malik won the NA-133 constituency—for the fourth time since 2008 although by a smaller margin as compared to when they won it in 2018 elections.  

Published by Mehak Javed

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NA-133 by-polls: PML-N retains seat for fourth time 

Lahore: As per unofficial results, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) candidate emerged victorious in the NA-133 by-election after securing 46,811 votes and trounced the Pakistan Peoples Party.   

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) Shaista Pervaiz Malik won the NA-133 constituency—for the fourth time since 2008 although by a smaller margin as compared to when they won it in the 2018 elections.  

PML-N's Shaista Pervaiz Malik— the widow of late Pervez Malik, emerged victorious after retaining the seat in a constituency that has long been the party's stronghold.  

Unofficial, preliminary results showed Malik defeated PPP opponent Aslam Gill by a margin of 14,498 votes, according to the unofficial results, 

PML-N secured 46,811 votes, while PPP candidate remained runner up by securing 32,313 votes.

However, PPP's Gill, got 26,728 more votes now as compared to the 2018 polls, when he obtained only 5,585. 

According to forum 47, the results of 254 were calculated. Out of 440485 votes in the constituency, 80997 votes were casted. 

The voters turn-out remained 18.59%, including 50936 males and 30959 females, whereas, 898 votes were wasted. 

Following the victory, Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) President Shahbaz Sharif and Vice-president Maryam Nawaz extended their congratulations on party’s victory in NA-133 by-elections

Eleven candidates were contesting in NA-133 election. However, a tough contest was already expected between PML-N and PPP.

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