News

Enemies of country's toughest policeman finally catch up with him

Pakistan blast reduces block of flats to rubble

rescue workers recover an injured girl from the rubble of a five-storey residential building which collapsed in Karachi yesterday.

Pakistan: 34 die in two days of violent clashes

At least 34 people have been killed in two days of unrest in Pakistan's largest city, Karachi, prompting authorities to call in paramilitary troops.

Soldiers charged over death of unarmed man

Police have charged six members of a paramilitary force with the killing of an unarmed man, a government lawyer said, in a rare rebuke to Pakistan's powerful military.

Video shows Pakistani army 'killing teenager'

Pakistani authorities are investigating a video that appears to show paramilitary forces shooting dead an unarmed teenager.

Leading journalist 'murdered by Pakistani security service'

Saleem Shahzad had warned that the authorities might act against him and revealed a previous threat

Four killed in raid on naval base

Gunmen stormed a naval base in the Pakistani city of Karachi last night, destroying a US-supplied surveillance aircraft, firing rockets and battling commandos sent to subdue them in one of the most brazen attacks in years. At least four navy personnel were killed and nine wounded in fighting at the Naval Station Mehran that was going on more than four hours after the strike began, said a navy spokesman. Between 10 and 15 attackers entered the site before splitting up into smaller groups, setting off explosions and hiding in the sprawling facility.

Saudi diplomat killed in Pakistan

Gunmen on a motorbike shot and killed a Saudi diplomat as he was driving in Pakistan's largest city today, just days after two hand grenades were tossed at the Arab state's consulate building, police in Karachi said.

Robert Fisk: Was he betrayed? Of course. Pakistan knew Bin Laden's hiding place all along

A middle-aged nonentity, a political failure outstripped by history – by the millions of Arabs demanding freedom and democracy in the Middle East – died in Pakistan yesterday. And then the world went mad.

Bus bombings kill four in Karachi

Bombs planted by the roadside tore through two Pakistani navy buses taking employees to work on Tuesday, killing four people and wounding more than 50 others.

The Cloud Messenger, By Aamer Hussein

Aamer Hussein's novel takes its title from Kalidasa's great Sanskrit poem "The Cloud Messenger". An exiled lover confides messages to a roving cloud, to be delivered to the beloved as life-giving rain. In Hussein's version, the narrator-hero, Mehran, is also a nomad, growing up in London far from his native Karachi and his mother's Indore, searching in a maze of tongues for the language of the heart.

Pakistan's PM rules out softening blasphemy laws

Pakistan's Prime Minister, Yousaf Gilani, said yesterday that his government had no plans to amend the country's controversial blasphemy laws, despite an earlier undertaking that the legislation would be reformed.

Pakistan: Boy arrested for exam blasphemy

Police have arrested a 17-year-old boy for writing an allegedly blasphemous remark in an exam paper.

Bina Shah: The trust that once flowed between journalists and locals has gone sour

In Mohsin Hamid's short story "A Beheading", published in Granta Pakistan last autumn, an unnamed man is dragged from his bed in the middle of the night and kidnapped. The man knows he's as good as dead when he is taken in the trunk of his assailants' 1981 Toyota Corolla. Within four paragraphs, the man is bound and gagged, on his knees in front of a video camera, remembering a goat that was sacrificed for Eid. Within six, he's begging them: "Tell me what to write. I'll never write again." And by the seventh paragraph, he has been beheaded.

A friend's labour of love reveals who killed Daniel Pearl

An inquiry has named the man who beheaded the American journalist but the killer may never be tried
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Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there