NORTH WAZIRISTAN: Elders of Uthmanzai Wazir tribe in North Waziristan tribal district put off their protest for 24 hours on Sunday on the request of elders from Bannu, Lakki Marwat and Bakakhel Wazir tribe.

The elders from the settled districts of Khyber Pakhunkhwa had approached the jirga of the Uthmanzai tribe and requested them to end their three-week-long protest against the incidence of targeted killing and to reopen the roads and bazaars. The elders, in accordance with the Pakhtun traditions, also presented sheep to the jirga as Nanawati.

In Nanawati, a tenet of the Pakhtunwali, a third party, presents the sheep, which is a way of seeking reconciliation or mediation. According to the local traditions, the Nanawati is always accepted.

Sources said that Bannu commissioner Mohammad Arshad Khan had constituted a 25-member jirga of the elders of Bannu, Lakki Marwat and Wazir Bakkakhel tribe to persuade the elders of Uthmanzai tribe to end the agitation.

The residents of North Waziristan had started the protest movement against the targeted killings with people blocking major roads in the district and closing bazaars.

Officials said that the Uthmanzai Wazir tribe had accepted the Nanawati and postponed their strike for the next 24 hours.

A jirga member Malik Rab Nawaz told mediapersons that roads would be blocked after 6pm on Monday if the government did not accept their demands. He said that the shutter down strike would also continue in the district.

Witnesses said dozens of loaded vehicles had been stranded on the Miramshah-Ghulam Khan highway. Trade with Afghanistan via Ghulam Khan border crossing has also been halted due to closure of roads in the district.

Published in Dawn, August 8th, 2022

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