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US dismisses Pakistan’s claims that Haqqani terror network has been wiped from the country

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Photo Credit: www.khaama.com

By NewsGram Staff-Writer

Washington: Rejecting the Pakistani National Security Adviser Sartaj Aziz’s claims that the notorious Afghanistan based Haqqani terror network has been wiped from the Pakistani soil, the US on Monday said threats from terror groups continue to arise from Pakistan.

US State Department Spokesman Mark Toner. Photo Credit: tribune.com.pk
US State Department Spokesman Mark Toner. Photo Credit: tribune.com.pk

US State Department Spokesman Mark Toner said: “We recognize that there’s still threat from these terrorist groups emanating from Pakistan. We want to see Pakistan take additional steps to address some of these threats,” according to a report in the Economic Times.

Toner added that, the US National Security Adviser Susan Rice had very “frank and productive conversations” with her counterpart in the Pakistan government about various threats that continues to have its presence in Pakistan.

Previously Sartaj Azis had stated that after the military operations against the Haqqani network in North Waziristan, they had relocated to Afghanistan and are no longer present in Pakistan.

Reacting to this, Toner said: “In terms of the Haqqani network and really the violence that we see from the Taliban and the Haqqani network, we really want to double down, on trying to stop these groups from carrying out other acts of terror,” as quoted in ET.

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Pakistani Doctors Blame Quacks for Alarming Rise in HIV Cases: Report

Pakistan was considered a country of low HIV prevalence for long, but the disease is expanding at an alarming rate with about 20,000 new HIV cases reported in 2017 alone, according to the UN

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Nearly 40 individual HPV types linked to HIV infection. Pixabay

The Pakistan Medical Association (PMA) has blamed quack doctors practicing without training and professional certification for an alarming rise in the number of HIV positive patients in the country, the media reported on Wednesday.

The doctors associated with the PMA said that the quacks, especially fake dentists, spread the virus by using instruments that were not sterilized, adding that despite free-of-cost availability of life-saving antiretroviral drugs at government hospitals, mortality ratio among patients carrying the virus was also increasing.

An alarming surge in HIV cases has been witnessed in five districts of Pakistan’s Punjab province, with 70 to 90 cases being reported monthly at the main government health facility in Faisalabad city, Dawn News reported.

Earlier this month, an international team of experts from the World Health Organization kicked off an investigation into the sudden HIV outbreak in Pakistan’s Sindh province after over 700 people were diagnosed with the virus in a matter of weeks, most of them were children.

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School girls light candles in the shape of a ribbon during a HIV/AIDS awareness campaign ahead of World Aids Day, in Ahmedabad, India, Nov. 30, 2016. (VOA)

Following the outbreak, authorities launched a crackdown on unqualified doctors as well as illegal blood banks and laboratories said to be involved in spreading the disease. At least 17 quack doctors were arrested and more than 70 clinics in Larkana district were shut down, according to Xinhua news agency.

According to the PMA, over 600,000 quacks are currently practicing in the country with more than 80,000 based in Punjab province alone.

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The association demanded the government to make all-out efforts to stop the menace of quackery in the country.

Pakistan was considered a country of low HIV prevalence for long, but the disease is expanding at an alarming rate with about 20,000 new HIV cases reported in 2017 alone, according to the UN. (IANS)