Standing Buddha, Gandhara, Pakistan, 1st century AD
The gradual decline of the Mughal Empire in the early eighteenth century provided opportunities for the Afghans, Balochis and Sikhs to exercise control over large areas until the British East India Company gained ascendancy over South Asia.
The Indus Priest/King wearing a Sindhi Ajruk, ca. 2500 BC.
The All India Muslim League rose to popularity in the late 1930s amid fears of under-representation and neglect of Muslims in politics.
17th Century Badshahi Masjid built during Mughal rule
The modern state of Pakistan was established on 14 August 1947 (27 Ramadan 1366 in the Islamic Calendar), carved out of the two Muslim-majority wings in the eastern and northwestern regions of British India and comprising the provinces of Balochistan, East Bengal, the North-West Frontier Province, West Punjab and Sindh.
Disputes arose over several princely states including in the Muslim-majority Jammu and Kashmir, whose ruler had acceded to India following an invasion by Pashtun tribal militias, leading to the First Kashmir War in 1948.
The Working Committee of the Muslim League in Lahore (1940)
From 1947 to 1956, Pakistan was a Dominion of Pakistan in the Commonwealth of Nations. Civilian rule resumed in Pakistan from 1972 to 1977 under Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, until he was deposed and later sentenced to death in 1979 by General Zia-ul-Haq, who became the country’s third military president.
The first Governor General Muhammad Ali Jinnah delivering the opening address on 11 August 1947 to the new state of Pakistan.
Military tensions in the Kargil conflict with India were followed by a Pakistani military coup d’état in 1999 in which General Pervez Musharraf assumed vast executive powers.
Mass Protest Against US drone strike Led by Imran Khan, anti-Americanism is increasing in Pakistan leading to high support to smaller political parties like Tehreek-e-Insaaf.
Pakistan is a democratic parliamentary federal republic with Islam as the state religion.
Aiwan-e-Sadr, the official residence of the President of Pakistan
The bicameral legislature comprises a 100-member Senate and a 342-member National Assembly. The Pakistani military has played an influential role in mainstream politics throughout Pakistan’s history, with military presidents ruling from 1958–71, 1977–88 and from 1999–2008.
Prime Minister of Pakistan, Yousaf Raza Gillani.
During the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980s, Pakistan was a major U.S. ally.
Asif Ali Zardari is the current President of Pakistan, he has faced heavy public opposition and corruption allegations.
On 18 February 2008, Pakistan held its general elections after Benazir Bhutto’s assassination postponed the original date of 8 January 2008.
Pakistan is a federation of four provinces, a capital territory and a group of federally administered tribal areas.
Prior to 2001, the sub-provincial tier of government was composed of 26 divisions with two further tiers (tehsils) administered directly from the provincial level.
Pakistan Administrative Units — Tier 1
The armed forces of Pakistan are the seventh-largest in the world.
Islamabad Capital Territory
Federally Administered Tribal Areas including the Frontier Regions
Azad Jammu and Kashmir
Since independence, the Army has been involved in four wars with neighbouring India and several border skirmishes with Afghanistan.
Pakistani Navy during a Drill.
The Pakistan military first saw combat in the First Kashmir War, gaining control of what is now Pakistan-administered Kashmir.
Pakistani F-16s in preparation for training with the USAF. Pakistan is classed as a Major non-NATO ally of the United States.
The JF-17 Thunder is built in Pakistan in cooperation with China.
During the Soviet–Afghan war, Pakistan shot down several intruding pro-Soviet Afghan aircraft and provided covert support to the Afghan mujahideen through the Inter-Services Intelligence agency.
A nuclear capable Babur cruise missile with a theoretical range of 1000km.
In the past, Pakistani personnel have volunteered to serve alongside Arab forces in conflicts with Israel.
Since 2004, Pakistani armed forces are engaged in fighting against Pakistani Taliban groups.
Internationally the Pakistani armed forces contributed to United Nations peacekeeping efforts, with more than 10,700 personnel deployed in 2009, and are presently the largest contributor.
The 62-kilometre-long Baltoro Glacier, in northern Pakistan, is one of the longest glaciers outside the polar regions.
Pakistan covers an area of 796,095 km (307,374 sq mi), approximately equaling the combined land areas of France and the United Kingdom.
Geologically, Pakistan overlaps with the Indian tectonic plate in its Sindh and Punjab provinces, while Balochistan and most of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa lie within the Eurasian plate which mainly comprises the Iranian plateau.
The geography of Pakistan is a blend of landscapes varying from plains to deserts, forests, hills, and plateaus ranging from the coastal areas of the Arabian Sea in the south to the mountains of the Karakoram range in the north.