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Pakistani teen to participate in Olympic torch relay

Published Jun 22, 2012 04:48pm


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Zainab Imran addresses a press conference in Karachi. – Photo by AFP
Zainab Imran addresses a press conference in Karachi. – Photo by AFP

KARACHI: A Pakistani schoolgirl selected to take part in the Olympic torch relay spoke of her delight on Friday, and said she hoped it could improve the country’s tarnished image.

Zainab Imran, 15, was selected to participate in the relay next week in Nottingham by the British Council.

Council volunteers from 20 countries were chosen to hold the torch and represent their country at a June 28 ceremony. The Olympic Games begins on July 27.

“It is a once in a lifetime opportunity and I am very happy,” Zainab told reporters. “It is a great inspiration for all Pakistani youth and I will try to present a soft image of my country.”

Pakistan’s image worsened spectacularly after US troops killed Osama bin Laden northwest of Islamabad in May 2011.

It has also attracted international criticism for its human rights record and the reluctance of its elites to pay taxes when so many millions live in poverty and from handouts from foreign donors.

“It’s unfortunate that a few people have tarnished our country’s image and it’s our duty to fight that out and don’t allow these people to create a bad name for Pakistan,” said Zainab.

Pakistan’s men’s field hockey team qualified, but otherwise Pakistan will field only wild card entries at the Games.


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Comments (16) Closed

Jibbi Jun 23, 2012 06:07pm
Proud to be Pakistani... Well Done....!!!
S. Khan Jun 22, 2012 05:25pm
Good Job !!! Best of Luck Zainab. Young kids like you are our country's Future. Thanks for your participation in the the 2012 Olympic torch relay and representating Pakistan. We are so proud of you !!!
arif Ahemd Jun 24, 2012 03:15pm
MashaAllah, God bless her
miramshah Jun 22, 2012 04:53pm
Another AFP debacle, cant see beyond OBL and soft images. Biased and exploitative
Kabir Jun 23, 2012 12:43pm
Thats the reality of the day brother...this shows how independent & democratic our system is. Anybody found guilty, no matter what ur designation is will be tried in the court of law!!
Arshad, USA Jun 23, 2012 11:51am
We have high hopes from our young generation. Keep up the good work. GOD BLESS PAKISTAN.
Nasser Ali Khan Jun 23, 2012 11:30am
A non-event for a nation teeming with population (6th biggest) with no talent. Take hockey for example, Pakistan won three of the first 5 world cups. Now we come last in any tournament that we take part. The hockey team is there just to make up the numbers. The nation energy is spent on terrorism, inhumanity to all and worse again women, and blaming US (as if it's their god) for all their ills.
MAAN Jun 25, 2012 06:28am
shaikhhabiba Jun 24, 2012 11:59am
proud my cousin and wish you all the best
abhay Jun 23, 2012 02:16am
there are very few instances that pakistan feel proud. you highlight such instances frequently
habiba Jun 24, 2012 12:02pm
proud my cousin and wish you all the best
sm786 Jun 23, 2012 04:33am
Congratulation! Be Pakistani and Muslim. Do not try to copy Western clothes. Show your own identify. God bless you and Good luck!
ahmet abdulaziz Jun 23, 2012 06:06am
A very encouraging event. I wish her all good luck. It will indeed do a lot in improving the image of Pakistan internationally.
Naeem Javid Jun 23, 2012 07:59am
Good luck with that!
Ali Jun 23, 2012 08:08am
Sorry... that's the worst kind of report where an Olympic torch bearer is mentioned with OBL's murder. Our new PM will do more damage to our soft image than any other being. The best soft image boaster was the headline in international posts " Pakistani SC dismisses the Prime Minister". .. really.
Najia Jun 23, 2012 06:33pm
Zainab baaji! woah! woah! you have enlightened our school's name! thank you so much! behalf of all that school! Very welldone!