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Journalist Gul Bukhari released after hours long ‘abduction’ in Lahore

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Lahore, June 6 :A Pakistani journalist and rights activist Gul Bukhari, who openly criticised Pakistan’s powerful military and its alleged meddling in politics was freed on Wednesday morning, hours after being kidnapped by unknown people in Lahore on Tuesday night.

Her family has confirmed that she has returned home and is fine, Dawn reported.

Bukhari’s abduction drew widespread outrage as she is a vocal critic of Pakistan’s military on social media, thus her abduction became the trending topic on Twitter in Pakistan.

Responding to the incident, former Pakistan Ambassador to US Husain Haqqani tweeted, “Concerned by news of columnist @gulbukhari, British-#Pakistan dual national & outspoken critic of Pak military’s role in politics, going missing. She should not join the long list of

Bukhari had been abducted on her way to record a Tprogramme on the Waqt news show when a group of trucks stopped her vehicle and men in plain clothes dragged her way while other men in “army uniforms” stood guard.

“They put black masks on her face and took her,” he said, adding that he was basing his information on Bukhari’s driver, who witnessed the abduction.

Pakistan General elections will be held on July 25 and She has defended Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party founder Nawaz Sharif, who has clashed with the military.

Maryam Nawaz Sharif, the daughter of PML-N founder Nawaz Sharif, called the abduction “disturbing.”

“This is just cruel & worst kind of oppression. Sad day. #BringBackGulBukhari,” she tweeted earlier in the evening.

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France’s Macron urges UN mission to visit China’s Xinjiang region

“This is the reason why … France has requested that an international mission under the aegis of the United Nations go to Xinjiang in order to take into account the concerns that we collectively have on the situation of the Muslim Uighur minority,”

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Uighur Muslim rights

PARIS : France’s president on Tuesday called for an international mission under the auspices of the United Nations to visit China’s Xinjiang due to concerns over the Muslim Uighur minority.

U.N. experts and activists say at least a million ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims are held in detention centres in Xinjiang. China describes them as training centres helping stamp out terrorism and extremism and giving people new skills.

“Fundamental rights are not a Western idea that one could oppose as an interference … these are the principles of our organisation, enshrined in texts that the member states of the United Nations have freely consented to sign and to respect,” Emmanuel Macron said in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly.

“This is the reason why … France has requested that an international mission under the aegis of the United Nations go to Xinjiang in order to take into account the concerns that we collectively have on the situation of the Muslim Uighur minority,” he said.

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Disaster

Israel reports 2,445 new Covid-19 cases; 193,374 in total

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israel coronavirus

Jerusalem, Sep 23 : Israel’s Ministry of Health reported 2,445 new Covid-19 cases on Tuesday, bringing the total confirmed cases to 193,374.

The total count of deaths from the coronavirus in Israel rose by 12 to 1,285, while the number of patients in serious condition rose from 653 to 668, out of 1,352 patients currently hospitalised, Xinhua news agency reported.

The number of recoveries in the country increased by 3,971 to 140,751, while the number of active Covid-19 cases stood at 51,338.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Israeli government approved a plan to expand the national economic safety net to deal with the pandemic’s impact.

“Expanding the plan will enable immediate economic assistance for businesses and wage-earners who are expected to be hurt by the current Covid-19 nationwide lockdown,” said a joint statement by the Prime Minister’s Office and Finance Ministry.

The expansion includes the lowering of damage threshold for businesses to receive fixed expenditure grants to 25 per cent, providing advances against the fixed expenditure grants, a comprehensive worker retention plan, and deferring the reduction in unemployment benefits.

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Disaster

United States Covid deaths top 200,000 as questions linger over halting virus spread

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Coronavirus Death US

The US death toll from the coronavirus exceeded 200,000, as some guidelines and practices for stopping the disease’s spread have been called into question.

While the data compiled by Johns Hopkins University indicated that 52,000 new cases had been reported on Monday, some 21,800 of those new cases came from the release of backlogged data in Texas.

The US logged 36,695 new cases on Sunday, Johns Hopkins reported.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention caused uncertainty Monday when it removed from its website newly posted guidelines saying the coronavirus could be transmitted by tiny particles that linger in the air.

The agency said a draft version of proposed changes was posted in error.

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COVID-19 affects different people in different ways. Most infected people will develop mild to moderate illness and recover without hospitalization.