Govt asked to stop operation in Wana

Published March 25, 2004

KHAAR, March 23: Religious leaders have demanded immediate halt to the military operation in the South Waziristan Agency and said that the present government has made the tribal people scapegoats to save its skin.

Speaking at a protest public meeting organized by the Mutahidda Majlis-i-Amal here on Tuesday, ulema and religious parties' leaders termed the on-going operation 'state terrorism' and said that the tribesmen's patriotism could not questioned.

The ulema criticized the government for what they called committing atrocities against tribesmen in the name of operation against Al Qaeda and Taliban fighters.

They apprehended that if the military action was not stopped, the people of semi-autonomous tribal agencies would revolt and take up arms against the government.

They demanded immediate halt to the operation and urged the government to refrain from killing and angering the tribesmen on Americans' dictation. The government policies have estranged the patriotic tribesmen and created a civil war-like situation in the tribal region, but the wanted militants and their alleged collaborators had slipped away through the so-called tight security put in place by the authorities," the ulema said.

Those who spoke on this occasion were: MNA Maulana Mohammad Sadiq, JUI-F Bajaur General Secretary Maulana Abdur Rasheed, defunct Tehrik Nefaz-i-Shariat-i-Muhammadi (TNSM) Naib Amir Maulana Inayatur Rehman and others.

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