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Babar Azam named captain of ICC ODI Team of Year

The ICC Team of the Year recognises 11 outstanding individuals who have impressed one and all – be it with the bat, the ball or their all-round exploits in a calendar year. Here, we take a look at 11 players who make the cut in the 50-over format of the game for men's cricket. With 705 runs, Paul Stirling finished 2021 as the highest run-scorer in ODIs in 2021. His runs came in only 14 matches at an average of 79.66 with three centuries and two half-centuries. The opener constantly got his side off to rapid starts,…

Pakistan’s Covid positivity rate jumps to nine-month high

ISLAMABAD: The positivity rate in Pakistan jumped to a nine-month high Thursday morning after the infection rate was reported to be at 11.55 percent. As many as 58,943 tests were conducted on Wednesday and of them, 6, 808 returned as negative, the second-highest daily case count since the coronavirus pandemic started in 2020, official figures showed. The country is witnessing a rapid rise in infections due to the Omicron variant. The highest daily toll was recorded on June 13, 2020, when the country reported 6,825…

FM invites opposition to support South Punjab province

Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi Wednesday invited all the opposition leaders to develop a consensus and support efforts for the creation of South Punjab province. In a series of tweets, the foreign minister said that the constitutional amendment in this regard required unity by all the political parties. “I welcome all opposition leaders to put the longstanding desire of the people of South Punjab foremost. Together we must reach consensus on passage of a Constitutional amendment for the creation of a…

Snow falls on Chinese capital as two-week Olympics countdown starts

Beijing was hit by a blanket of snow Thursday, as the Winter Olympics countdown clocked two weeks until the Chinese capital hosts the sporting extravaganza. Temperatures fell below minus nine degrees Celsius (15 degrees Fahrenheit) as commuters struggled to work Thursday morning, with snow dusting roads, buildings, and Olympics venues across the megacity of nearly 22 million. Although temperatures in Beijing regularly drop well below freezing in the winter months, the city is very dry which makes snowfall unusual.…

Biden says ‘not time to give up’ on Iran nuclear talks

US President Joe Biden said Wednesday that it is "not time to give up" on talks with Iran aimed at reviving the 2015 nuclear deal. "It's not time to give up," Biden said at a press conference to mark his first year in the White House. "There is some progress being made," he said. "P5+1 are on the same page but it remains to be seen," Biden said in a reference to the nations taking part in the negotiations in Vienna. Talks to restore the 2015 accord between Tehran and world powers -- United States, France,…

PM telephones Abdu Dhabi ruler, condemns Houthis attack

Prime Minister Imran Khan Tuesday telephoned Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan and condemned the heinous terrorist attack by Houthi militia on civil facilities in the UAE. The prime minister affirmed Pakistan’s solidarity with the UAE and rejection of any threat to the security and sovereignty of the Emirates, UAE’s official news agency WAM reported. He also offered his condolences for the victims of these attacks and wished a speedy…

UAE top diplomat phones FM Qureshi over Houthis attack

Foreign Minister of the UAE Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan Tuesday phoned his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi to condole the death of a Pakistani national in a terror attack by Houthis Monday. He also shared details of the tragic incident with Foreign Minister Qureshi who reiterated Pakistan’s strong condemnation of the heinous terrorist attack on civilian areas by Houthi militia. He offered condolences to the families of the victims and prayed for the speedy recovery of the injured. The foreign…

Pakistan records 5, 472 new Covid cases, eight deaths

Pakistan registered a positivity ratio at 9.48% as 5,472 new cases were detected in the last 24 hours, the National Command and Operation Centre, the forum leading Pakistan's COVID response, said. As many as 57,669 people underwent tests for Covi and out of them 5, 472 were found to be infected with the virus. Active coronavirus cases the country jumped from 39,881 to 44,717 in the last 24 hours, the highest since October 6. Eight new deaths pushed the death toll to 29,037, while new infections have taken the…

Govt may consider school closure for children under 12

The federal government is considering a proposal to shut down schools for unvaccinated children under the age of 12 years, a health official said. The government does not plan on closing schools where children above 12 years, staff, and teachers have been vaccinated, Parliamentary Secretary on Health Dr Nausheen Hamid was quoted by Geo as saying. Dr Hamid said the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) — the forum leading the country's pandemic response — is devising a strategy to keep checks and balances on…

China’s birth rate at record low in 2021: official

China's birth rate plummeted to a record low last year, official data showed Monday, as analysts warn that faster-than-expected ageing could deepen economic growth concerns. Beijing has been grappling with a looming demographic crisis as it faces a rapidly ageing workforce, slowing economy and the country's weakest population growth in decades. The birth rate of the world's second-biggest economy slipped to 7.52 births per 1,000 people, according to National Bureau of Statistics data, down from 8.52 in 2020. The…

Pakistan transfers $100,000, first salary to widow of murdered Sri Lankan factory manager

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Political Communication Dr Shahbaz Gill on Monday said that the first salary of $ 1667 committed by Rajco Industries for the next 10 years has been transferred to the account of the widow of the deceased Sri Lankan Manager Priyantha Khumara. The Prime Minister of Pakistan announced payment of the salary and funds to the widow of the deceased, he tweeted. Gill said funds of $ 100,000 have also been transferred to the account of the widow of the deceased Sri Lankan…

NCOC links school closure with Covid testing data

The National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Monday discussed a new set of non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) to contain the fourth wave of the Coronavirus. It was decided that the new NPIs would be implemented by the provinces in the next 48 hours after consultations with all the stakeholders. The NCOC meeting chaired by Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar here, reviewed the epidemic curve chart data and national vaccine strategy. Global and regional trends of…

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