World News

    Pakistani Elections: High Security, Strong Turnout

    Voters in Pakistan are casting ballots for lawmakers in the National Assembly in a historic election that will see a transition from one civilian administration that finished a full term in office to another civilian administration.

    A VOA reporter on the scene says security was high much of the day, after a series of violent events in the lead-up to the election.

    Scattered incidents of violence left at least 14 people dead on Saturday.

    Twin bomb blasts in Karachi killed at least 10 people at a political campaign office for the Awami National Party, one of the parties targeted for attacks by the Taliban. Shootings in the southwestern province of Baluchistan left at least four others dead.

    A huge turnout took place at polling stations across the country while relatively few attacks have taken place on election day.

    More than 100 people have been killed and scores injured since late April in attacks, as the Taliban sought to undermine the election. Taliban members had warned of suicide attacks on election day.

    Pakistani politician and former cricketer Imran Khan is leading the PTI party and creating a challenge to the two parties that long dominated Pakistani politics. But Khan, who is popular with Pakistan's younger voters, suffered a fall earlier this week and is in a hospital, not able to make campaign appearances.

    Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif leads the Pakistan Muslim League, which is expected to take the majority of votes as candidates compete in the National Assembly.

    Public opinion polls indicate that the Pakistan People's Party is trailing its two competitors. The PPP's most prominent member is President Asif Ali Zardari, widower of assassinated former prime minister Benazir Bhutto.

    Winners of the 272 seats in Saturday's parliamentary elections will be tasked with leading a country suffering from periodic power failures, a poor economy, a Taliban insurgency and political corruption.



    Bombings on Friday killed at least four people and wounded 18 others.

    The four died in a blast near political party offices in North Waziristan - a Taliban and al-Qaida stronghold. Thirteen people were wounded.

    A blast in the southwestern part of the country wounded five more people outside an office being used by the Pakistan People's Party.

    No one has claimed responsibility for the bombings.

    Pakistan's military says it is deploying thousands of troops to polling stations and counting centers.

    The recent bombings of two rallies of a leading Islamic party Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam strengthened views the Taliban is opposed to democracy and is targeting anyone taking part in the elections.

    On Thursday, the last day of campaigning, militants kidnapped Ali Haider Gilani in Punjab province. He is the son of former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani who is running for a provincial assembly seat.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora