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Waziristan ‘Taliban’ kill two ‘extortionists’

December 10, 2005

MIRAMSHAH, Dec 9: Local militants, known as Taliban here, killed two more ‘extortionists’ and hung their decapitated bodies upside down on pylons. The victims, both Afghan refugees, were members of the so-called Hakim group that had reportedly attacked the Taliban some time back. The attack led to reprisals and clashes that have so far claimed 21 lives.

Witnesses said the Taliban, who had been carrying out a search for remnants of the Hakim group for quite some time now, found the two Afghans when they were attempting to flee the North Waziristan.

The two were caught on Thursday night, brought to Miramshah and summarily executed. Their decapitated bodies were later tied to pick-up trucks and dragged on roads before being strung up to power supply poles near Zakim Hospital.

The bodies were later removed and thrown in the open after the scene had caused a traffic jam. The bodies remained unattended, witnesses said.

The Taliban continued their ‘search operation’ in Eidak and Hoormaz villages.

The militants have issued warnings to people against providing shelter to members of the Hakim group. People have also been asked to learn a ‘lesson’ and give up crimes. “Those who indulge in crimes and other vices shall meet the similar fate,” they said.

Witnesses said that the Taliban armed with rockets and other heavy weapons continued to patrol roads in Miramshah.

An official in Peshawar defended the government’s ‘wait-and-see policy’.

“It will be inappropriate to take any action (against militants) now, considering the fact that the militants had tremendous local support in their action against those thugs. Any action against militants might be construed as in support of the bandits,” the official said, seeking anonymity.

He said the political administration in Miramshah had been asked to convene a jirga on Saturday to discuss the situation.

On Friday, political agent Zaheerul Islam met a group of clerics led by former MNA Maulana Deendar.

DENIAL: Meanwhile, the brother of Hayatullah, a journalist who was kidnapped last week, told Dawn that the Taliban had written to him denying that they were behind the kidnapping of his brother.

He said the whereabouts of Hayatullah remained unknown.

There are now suspicions that Hayatullah might have been picked up some intelligence agency for taking pictures of the pieces of missiles that reportedly killed Hamza Rabia of Al Qaeda. The pictures showed US marking on missile pieces.