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Runaway Saudi woman leaves for Canada

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Rahaf Mohammed al Qunun

BANGKOK: An 18-year-old Saudi woman who fled her family seeking asylum in Australia left for South Korea on her way to Canada late on Friday, the head of Thai immigration police said, in a surprise twist to a saga partly played out over Twitter.

Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun was granted refugee status by the UN two days ago after arriving in Bangkok over the weekend and amassing a large Twitter following as she made desperate pleas for help from the airport.

Australia was assessing a request to resettle her, but hours after the young woman tweeted that she had “some good news and some bad news”.

Earlier, on Friday Thai authorities said she was set to board a flight to Canada instead. “She will fly at 11:15pm tonight (1615 GMT),” said Thai immigration chief Surachate Hakparn.

The woman’s social media-driven fight for freedom was watched closely around the world after she arrived in Bangkok via Kuwait and barricaded herself in a hotel room posting live updates about her status. She quickly amassed tens of thousands of followers with a #SaveRahaf hashtag that went viral and saw her delivered into the hands of the UN refugee agency in lightning speed compared to other asylum cases.

Rahaf’s quest also prompted online vitriol and death threats that made her deactivate her Twitter account after posting her last update.

Asia

Bears growl at Hong Kong bourse

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Bearish bourse

HONG KONG: Shares fell more than one percent Tuesday, hit by concerns over rising  Iran-US tensions and as investors await this week’s crucial trade talks between  Donald Trump and Xi Jinping.
The Hang Seng Index sank 1.15 percent, or 327.02 points, to 28,185.98. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.87 percent or 26.07 points,
to 2,982.07, while the Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China’s second exchange, lost 0.99 percent, or 15.63 points, to 1,560.46.

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Pakistan

Pak role in Afghan peace process lauded by SG of NATO

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NATO

BRUSSELS: Secretary General of NATO Jens Stoltenberg during a meeting with Pakistani FM Makhdoom Shah Mehmood Qureshi has noted that Pakistan had played a positive role in regional peace. 

Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that NATO wanted to work with Pakistan on bilateral understanding. 

GS NATO and FM Pakistan profoundly discussed security matters being faced by Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Kashmir. 

Relevant pieces published earlier: 

Pak Foreign Minister arrives in Brussels

BRUSSELS: Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Foreign Minister (FM) of Pakistan, has arrived here today on a two-day official visit. 

Here he will be signing a comprehensive strategic plan with EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini. He will also meet NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg at its headquarters in Brussels.

Strategic plan agreed with EU: FM Qureshi

ISLAMABAD: FM Shah Mehmood Qureshi has informed that a strategic plan had been agreed with the European Union (EU).

FM said this while talking to the journalists here today before leaving for Brussels. FM further told that he would sign this agreement with EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini. Terming it a positive development Qureshi said it would begin long-term cooperation with the EU. 

Qureshi, who is scheduled to meet NATO General Secretary at its headquarters in Brussels, said Pakistan had been cooperating with NATO and extended unprecedented help to US and NATO forces in matters pertaining to Afghanistan.  FM reiterated that Pakistan had played a key role in the war against terrorism and NATO had acknowledged that fact.  

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Education

Krish Das discusses Master of Sc. in Journalism program (VIDEO AND TEXT)

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COFFEE WITH KRISH USA

KARACHI: Krish Das, the US Consulate General’s spokesman here, and Dr. Larry Pintak, founding dean of the Edward R. Murrow College of Communication and member of the advisory board of the Center of Excellence in Journalism (CEJ) discuss the CEJ and its various programs including the Master of Science in Journalism.  

 

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