Pakistan attack: Taliban militants storm agricultural college in Peshawar

Pakistani security personnel take position outside an agriculture training institute that was attacked by Taliban militants in Peshawar on December 1. (AFP)
Updated 01 December 2017
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Pakistan attack: Taliban militants storm agricultural college in Peshawar

PESHAWAR: Taliban militants stormed a training institute in Pakistan’s northwestern city of Peshawar Friday, injuring at least seven people.
Two to three gunmen entered the Agriculture Training Institute Friday morning, where they began firing indiscriminately, Peshawar police chief Muhammad Tahir Khan said.
“A number of people have been injured and the military and other law enforcement agencies are carrying out an operation to clear the area,” he said.
The militants are believed to remain inside the compound. An AFP reporter at the site saw a helicopter hovering over the area and heard gunshots from inside the building.
A residential area also within the training institute compound is being evacuated.
Wasim Riaz, a senior police official, said seven people injured so far have been shifted to the government-run Lady Reading Hospital.
A spokesman for the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, Muhammad Khurasani, claimed responsibility for the attack in a telephone call to AFP.
“Our mujahids have attacked the building because it was used as office for ISI, God willing our fighters will fight till the last drop of blood,” he said, referring to Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence agency.
The area where the incident occurred is a hub for educational institutions in the city including the university of Peshawar.
An interior ministry official said that cellular networks have been suspended in various cities across the country for security reasons.
Security was also tight after weeks-long anti-blasphemy protests in Islamabad that saw seven killed and hundreds wounded in clashes with police.
Violence erupted over the weekend after police and paramilitary forces launched a bungled attempt to clear the sit-in, igniting fresh demonstrations in cities across the country, including in Lahore and Karachi.
The protests were finally ended just days ago under a military-brokered deal.
In December 2014, a Taliban attack on the army-run school in Peshawar killed 151 people, mostly schoolchildren.


Babies not welcome in parliament, Danish speaker says

Members of the Dutch Senate (the First Chamber) in The Hague. (AFP)
Updated 12 min 54 sec ago
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Babies not welcome in parliament, Danish speaker says

  • In 2016, an Icelandic lawmaker made headlines after breastfeeding her infant while speaking at the podium in parliament

COPENHAGEN: A Danish lawmaker said Tuesday she was ordered to remove her infant daughter from parliament’s chamber, sparking surprise in a country often hailed as a pioneer in women’s rights.
“You are not welcome with your baby in the parliament’s chamber,” speaker Pia Kjaersgaard, an outspoken former leader of the far-right Danish People’s Party, allegedly told MP Mette Abildgaard.
“I didn’t ask for permission to bring her since I had previously seen another colleague bring a child into the chamber without any problems,” Abildgaard, whose Conservative party is part of the ruling center-right coalition, wrote on Facebook.
Abildgaard, who is in her 30s, said she found herself in an exceptional situation with her five-month-old daughter, and had never brought her into the chamber before.
But she said the infant was “in a good mood and had a pacifier in her mouth.”
Kjaersgaard passed the message to an assistant, who then asked Abildgaard to remove the baby from the room.
Abildgaard handed the child to an assistant and returned to the chamber to vote.
“MPs should be in the chamber, not babies or children,” insisted Kjaersgaard when questioned by news agency Ritzau.
She said clear rules would be issued on the subject.
The Scandinavian country is often held up as a champion of gender equality and women’s rights, and as a child and family-centered nation with generous parental leave.
Abildgaard noted that she was entitled to a year’s maternity leave with full pay, but that she had chosen to return to work.
Her Facebook post garnered more than 600 comments within the space of a few hours.
“A chamber that represents mothers, fathers and babies ought to be open to mothers, fathers and babies,” one person wrote.
In 2016, an Icelandic lawmaker made headlines after breastfeeding her infant while speaking at the podium in parliament.
And in September, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern became a symbol for working mothers when she brought her baby to the UN General Assembly in New York.