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Malik Siraj Akbar
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Malik Siraj Akbar, based in Washington DC, is a journalist, political analyst and the Communications Specialist at the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC).
He was a 2012 Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and, a 2010-11 Fulbright Hubert. H. Humphrey Fellow at Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Akbar is the author of Pakistan: A Broken Democracy (2015) and the Redefined Dimensions of Baloch Nationalist Movement. In 2006-2010, Akbar served as the Bureau Chief of Pakistan's liberal English language publications, Daily Times, and The Friday Times in the country's largest province of Balochistan.
Akbar's struggle for press freedom in his native Balochistan has been profiled by CNN, BBC World and the Washington Post.
Newsweek Pakistan called Akbar "the star Baloch reporter of his generation" while Huffington Post Live termed him a "real mouthpiece for the oppressed."
Akbar has a Master's degree in Public Administration from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government, where he was elected as the Vice President Communications in the Student Government and the Online Editor of The Citizen, the campus newspaper of the Kennedy School. As the first Pakistani recipient of the South Asia Foundation Media Scholarship, Akbar earned a Post-Graduate Diploma in Journalism from the Asian College of Journalism in India in 2006. Email:

Entries by Malik Siraj Akbar

Qandeel Baloch, 'Pakistan’s Kim Kardashian,' Is Killed

(0) Comments | Posted July 16, 2016 | 7:00 PM

Qandeel Baloch, 26, a model and Pakistan’s most popular internet celebrity, was killed on Friday by her brother in probably the country’s most high-profile case of “honor killing.” Her brother strangled her while she was asleep in the city of Multan.


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Pakistan Needs A New Ambassador In Washington

(0) Comments | Posted July 14, 2016 | 11:48 PM

Anger toward Pakistan is consistently increasing in Washington, particularly in Congress, as more new voices are speaking up against Islamabad’s double standards in its fight against Islamic terrorists and dealings with the United States. At a recent congressional hearing entitled “Pakistan: Friend or foe in...

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The Pakistani Army's Coup Against Itself

(64) Comments | Posted April 23, 2016 | 7:20 PM

General Raheel Sharif, Pakistan's army chief, is taking action against corrupt army officers. To what extent will he go in this unprecedented battle? Photo source: Baaghi TV, Pakistan.

Media leaks have revealed that Pakistan's powerful army chief General Raheel...

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An Arab and Israeli Student Conference at Harvard Aims to Explore Peaceful Solutions through Business

(0) Comments | Posted March 31, 2016 | 8:48 AM


An upcoming conference at the Harvard Business School (HBS) sees business and economic cooperation as a potential tool for bringing peace and prosperity in the Middle East. The Arab and Israeli students are collaborating in a unique fashion for the event,...

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For Pakistan, Radical Islam Is the Problem, Not the Solution

(15) Comments | Posted March 28, 2016 | 12:02 AM

A day before the tragic bomb blast in Lahore, a city described as "the heart of Pakistan", I hosted Raza Rumi, a prominent liberal Pakistani journalist, on a live radio show to inquire if Pakistan's prime minister Nawaz Sharif had finally decided to walk...

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Tensions Mount Between India and Pakistan Over Balochistan

(7) Comments | Posted March 27, 2016 | 12:30 AM

Photo Source: Dunya News, Pakistan

On March 24th, the Pakistani security officials, backed by the civilian authorities, said they had arrested an Indian national somewhere in Balochistan and now they describe it as the "evidence" of Indian involvement...

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New Study Finds Lack of Housing for 7.2 Million Lowest Income Renters

(0) Comments | Posted March 25, 2016 | 6:54 PM


The National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) released a new report, The Gap: The Affordable Housing Gap Analysis 2016, which documents a shortage of 7.2 million affordable and available rental units for the nation's 10.4 million extremely...

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The Mohajir Reawakening in Pakistan

(0) Comments | Posted March 17, 2016 | 2:31 PM

Mustafa Kamal,44, has revolted from one of Pakistan's most feared political parties, the MQM. What next? (Photo source: Dawn, Pakistan)

The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), an influential, controversial yet persistently relevant political party which has simultaneously controlled Pakistan's...

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Why Is Pakistan Listing Some Journalists as "Terrorists"?

(1) Comments | Posted March 9, 2016 | 3:43 PM

2016-03-09-1457541206-9756112-aliraza.jpg Journalist Ali Raza Rind's name has been added to a list of 'terrorists' under a controversial law that restricts his mobility.

The Pakistani government is intimidating some journalists and drastically curtailing their mobility under a repressive law known as the Fourth...

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Diane Yentel to be New President of National Low Income Housing Coalition

(0) Comments | Posted February 16, 2016 | 12:17 PM

Diane Yentel, NLIHC's new President and CEO

The Washington D.C.-based National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), reputed for its research on and advocacy for affordable housing for low income Americans, announced on Tuesday that leading affordable housing policy...

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A Protest Outside the White House Highlights Pakistan's Rights Abuses in Balochistan

(0) Comments | Posted February 13, 2016 | 4:37 PM


Political leaders, including a former Speaker of the state legislature, activists and human rights defenders protested outside the White House on Friday February 12th to protest against Pakistan's military actions against opposition political activists and unarmed civilians in the country's resource-rich province of...

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The Political Assassination of Baloch Leader Dr. Manan

(0) Comments | Posted January 30, 2016 | 11:07 AM


The killing of a pro-independent Balochistan leader, Dr. Manan, on Saturday by the Pakistani security forces in Mastung is a great setback for establishing peace in volatile Balochistan. Dr. Manan was the secretary general of the Baloch...

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Renewed Af-Pak Tensions

(0) Comments | Posted January 27, 2016 | 12:07 AM


Photo Source: Sama TV, Pakistan

Tensions between the Pakistani and the Afghan governments are gradually coming out in public following the terrorist attack on the Bacha Khan University by the Taliban on January 20th. Although Pakistan's army chief General...

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Loved or Feared: Pakistan's Retiring General Sharif

(0) Comments | Posted January 25, 2016 | 9:04 PM

Photo Source: Dawn, Pakistan

Pakistan's powerful army chief, General Raheel Sharif, has stunned his supporters and critics with Monday's unanticipated announcement that he would not seek an extension for his job when the duration of his service expires...

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How Pakistan Abandoned Its Minorities

(2) Comments | Posted January 16, 2016 | 10:48 PM

Photo Source:

Since its creation in 1947, Pakistan's political leaders and scholars have constantly debated the degree to which their country should refer to Islam as the source of national identity. There have been various justifications why Pakistan had...

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Modi's 'Birthday Diplomacy': How Will Pakistan's Sharif Reciprocate?

(6) Comments | Posted December 27, 2015 | 12:47 AM

Photo Source: The Hindustan Times

The Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi wrote an unprecedented chapter of peace on Friday with his unanticipated visit to the neighboring rival Pakistan. He was the first Indian head of the government...

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Pakistan's Army Chief Is in Washington -- Embarrassing His Prime Minister

(0) Comments | Posted November 17, 2015 | 2:29 AM

Photo Source: Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Pakistan

Why is General Raheel Sharif, Pakistan's army chief, visiting Washington right now? Wasn't his Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, in the nation's capital less than a month ago? I know...

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Is Mark Zuckerberg Chasing the Wrong India?

(0) Comments | Posted November 2, 2015 | 10:51 PM

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and India's populist Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, have become new buddies. Zuckerberg hosted Modi at the Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, C.A., for a townhall in September. Weeks later, it was followed by another event at the Indian Institute of Technology in New Delhi...

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Bangladesh: Please Stop It

(0) Comments | Posted November 1, 2015 | 10:55 PM

The horrific cycle of killing of secular bloggers in Bangladesh, which has already claimed at least four lives this year, and the fresh murder of publisher Faisal Arefin Dipon, in Dhaka, the Bangladeshi capital, on October 31, is deeply disconcerting. The Ansar al-Islam, an...

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The Man Who Heckled Pakistan's Prime Minister

(0) Comments | Posted October 29, 2015 | 10:49 PM

(Photo Source: The Hindustan Times)

"Don't touch me. Don't touch me," warned Ahmar Masti Khan, Washington's Baloch activist journalist, "don't touch me. I am American." He had just flabbergasted Pakistan's visiting Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, by heckling...

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