Saleha Riaz

An LSE graduate working as a sub-editor on the editorial pages of The Express Tribune

What I witnessed in Bangladesh

I would like to use this platform to address some of the comments received on my opinion editorial about my experience in Dhaka at the cricket World Cup quarter-final that Pakistan played against West Indies. Firstly, I would like to admit that what I saw of Bangladesh was only a microcosm of the country – I spent less than three days and only went around Dhaka. If someone told me they went to Pakistan and only saw a bit of Islamabad, I would say, “Well you haven’t really seen the country now, have you? There is so much more the ...

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Sexy people need to care about Pakistan

I must admit that the number of flood awareness related display pictures, events and links shared on Facebook have significantly decreased even though the problem, itself, has not. Display pictures have changed from victims submerged in water or looking up at helicopters for food or to be rescued to people joyfully posing at weddings and parties. My events page, once full of requests from charity organisers, is now dominated by clothes exhibitions. This gradual change left me with slight grief as I realised that we had hit a saturation point – done what we felt we could and now wanted to ...

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Burqa, babes and breast cancer

When I saw the video  of two women (one of them Muslim) walking around Paris veiled faces and bare legs, I couldn’t figure out what the purpose was. Yes, they want to bring attention to the burqa ban, but what is their stance on it? Regardless of whether I am for the ban or not my only thought was: well, they look silly, and the video certainly wouldn’t change my take on the matter. If their intention is to support freedom of dress, I suppose they are making a statement (along with creating a great photo op for everyone on ...

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Flight ED202: Closer to home

What made the plane crash of July 28 different from all the other numerous tragedies – suicide blasts, floods, the war in the north – to recently befall Pakistan? This is one question on many people’s minds. On the day of the crash at least 80 other deaths took place in our country. Deaths not related to the crash. Yet this one incident took precedence not only in media coverage – do reporters run to the houses of victims’ families after every suicide blast or drone attack? — but also in the hearts and minds of those around me. The ...

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June 29, 2010

Of copper, cobalt and chrystals

I previously wrote about double standards found in every nook and cranny of our society but let’s not forget double standards everywhere else too, on larger scales. Take General McChrystal’s sacking for speaking against US President Barack Obama’s policies in Afghanistan and ridiculing members of his national security team. I’m not sure if it’s the epitome of democracy or the lowest abyss of freedom of speech in the land of the, well, free. And not just that. The US has recently discovered $1 trillion worth of mineral deposits in Afghanistan, “far beyond any previously known reserves, enough to fundamentally ...

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