Saudi Arabia extradites suspect in murder of Pakistani social media star

Pakistani model and social media star Qandeel Baloch. (AP/File)
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Updated 03 January 2020

Saudi Arabia extradites suspect in murder of Pakistani social media star

  • Muzaffar Iqbal was handed over to Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency on Wednesday

ISLAMABAD: A fugitive suspected of instigating the murder of Pakistani model and social media star Qandeel Baloch has been extradited from Saudi Arabia, Interior Ministry officials revealed on Thursday.

Muzaffar Iqbal was arrested by Interpol and handed over to Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Wednesday before being transferred into the custody of police authorities in the city of Multan, Abdul Aziz Uqaili, the ministry’s additional secretary and spokesman, told Arab News.

Uqaili said that Iqbal had been moved from the Kingdom to Pakistan with the help of Interpol’s National Central Bureau in Riyadh.

Baloch, 26, who rose to prominence with her videos on social media networks which often challenged social norms in Pakistan, was strangled in July 2016 at her parents’ home in Muzaffargarh in the eastern Punjab province.

Her so-called “honor killing” focused huge attention on the deaths of other Pakistani women at the hands of close family members, placing law enforcement agencies in the country under pressure to act quickly in her case to apprehend her killers.


‘Wusool’ transport program benefits 60,000 Saudi women

Updated 20 February 2020

‘Wusool’ transport program benefits 60,000 Saudi women

RIYADH: Over 60,000 Saudi female employees have benefited from Wusool, a female transportation program that helps ease their daily commute.

The program aims to find solutions that reduce the burden of transportation costs for Saudi female workers in the private sector by providing them with subsidies from the Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF) for high-quality, safe and secure transportation services to and from the workplace, partnering with taxi companies through licensed smart apps.

The program aims to increase the participation of women in the labor market and increase job stability. 

The HRDF said it made amendments and updates to Wusool to ensure that the largest number of applicants benefitted from it. This comes as part of the HRDF’s support for women working in the private sector.

The procedures included amendments to the terms of enrollment in the program, including the requirement to be registered under the General Organization for Social Insurance (GOSI), where the employee should be registered for less than 36 months, and her monthly salary should not exceed SR8,000 ($2,132). SPA Riyadh

The amendments also included a fixed monthly financial support provided by HRDF, covering 80 percent of the cost at a maximum of SR800 per month, in addition to the cancelation of the previously planned financial participation of SR200, and extending the support period to 12 months.

Women working in the private sector can register for the Wusool program by visiting http://wusool.sa.