Human rights activists hold placards to mark the anniversary of an attack on the Army Public School Peshawar in Lahore on Wednesday. AFP
Gulf Today Report
Today (Dec.16, 2020) marks six years since the brutal attack at the Army Public School (APS) Peshawar took place, and the country continues to remember and mourn the loss of over 140 innocent lives.
As the country marked the sixth anniversary of the APS Peshawar carnage on Wednesday, politicians and Pakistani showbiz stars paid homage to the families that suffered in the heinous 2014 attack in which 131 school children and 10 others lost their lives.
The attack had shocked the entire nation as terrorists stormed inside the school and fired at children who were attending classes at the time.
Prime Minister Imran Khan also recalled the day that came as a shock and ended up uniting the nation against such vile acts of terrorism.
"Today, six years ago, the nation was shocked and grieved by the extreme act of terrorism against children and teachers of APS; and the nation came together with a resolve to take on those responsible. We remain determined & are moving forward in fulfilling this commitment to the nation," tweeted the premier.
Speaker of the National Assembly Asad Qaiser also vowed to "continue to fight until the scourge of terrorism and extremism would be rooted out from our country."
Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar said Dec 16, 2014, was not a "dark day" only for Pakistan but also for the whole of humanity. Sharing an old picture with one of the survivors of the attack, he said he remembered the "bravery of the boy whose courage was intact even after [what was for him] the end of the world."
Terming the incident "heart-rending," PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz said Dec.16 marked the day when the nation's future, its children were "stolen."
"Under the guidance of Nawaz Sharif, the nation, with the help of the armed forces and civil security agencies, took revenge for the blood of its children, defeated the terrorists and restored peace," she said.
PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari demanded that those responsible for the attack be punished, saying that until they were brought to justice, the APS incident would continue to "haunt the nation's conscience."
Bilawal expressed solidarity with the parents of the martyred children and paid tribute to them. He said it was the responsibility of the government and the state to prove that terrorists had been "weakened."
KP Health Minister Taimur Khan Jhagra said "words would never be enough". He shared a picture of the martyred students and wrote: "On this day, the memory of those who sacrificed their lives at #APSPeshawar must spur us on to build a country where the future of millions of children is bright."
A number of celebs are also remembering the victims on this grim day, as singer Hadiqa Kiani recalls it as "the day the whole nation cried."
"Today marks the darkest day in our nation’s history. The day the whole nation cried, the day the most innocent souls were ripped from our world, the day families were torn apart but today, today we take time to pray for those innocent souls, to pray for their families, to pray for the survivors, to pray for our nation’s peace. May Allah grant strength and peace to the families," tweeted the Boohey Barian singer.
She then added, "May Allah continue to give the survivors the courage and strength to make our country proud. May Allah protect and guide us all."
Seasoned actor and producer Humayun Saeed also mourned the loss that continues to break our hearts each year this day arrives. "16th December — a tragic reminder of invaluable loss in our war against terrorism. Nothing is more important than the safety and well-being of our children. May Allah always protect them all," he wrote.
Whereas Bilal Ashraf, Sanam Jung and Ali Rehman Khan went on to share the hashtags #APSPeshawar, #Neverforget and #APSmartyrs.
India has put its army, navy and air force on high alert in Jammu and Kashmir after receiving input on possible terror attacks, officials at the Ministry of Defence (MoD) confirmed.
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Imran Khan made the announcement in a televised address to the nation, alleging that some lawmakers from his ruling Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) party had been bribed by the opposition to vote for former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani in the Senate elections on Wednesday.
UAE's Embassy in London welcomed over 500 friends from the UK, UAE, and internationally to a grand reception at London’s famed Natural History Museum in South Kensington to commemorate 51 years since the founding of the UAE.
"On this day, we commemorate the bright memory of the Founding Fathers, led by the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and his brothers, the Founders of the Nation, as well as their determination, wisdom and vision that established the Union.”
President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan said that the 51st UAE National Day is a day to recall lessons of the past, and look at the present with awareness and contemplation, while looking to the future with hope, optimism and confidence.