Wednesday, March 30, 2011

People seek decisive action against militants


PARACHINAR: Demanding the safe release of the abducted passengers, hundreds of angry tribesmen Tuesday staged a protest demonstration against the militants and the government and held both responsible for the ongoing death and destruction in Kurram Agency.

Led by the Turi tribe residing in upper tehsil of Parachinar, the protesters vowed to take extreme steps if the government and the security forces delayed action against the militants in lower part of Kurram Agency.

The protest was triggered by the Saturday last incident in which Parachinar-bound vehicles were attacked by the militants. At least 15 travellers were killed and over 40 others kidnapped by the attackers.

The protesters were holding banners and placards inscribed with slogans against the government and the militants, accusing them of killing innocent human beings.

Addressing the protesters, tribal elders and ulema including Allama Syed Abid Hussain, Atta Muhammad Ibrahim, Mussarat Bangash and Malik Iqbal said the government along with the security forces was useless and unnecessary burden if the citizens were left exposed to the wolves.

They added both the sects living in Kurram Agency inked the Murree peace deal followed by agreement in Islamabad in good faith but the government had failed to implement the deal in its letter and spirit. They said it was the government that announced the reopening of the roads leading to Parachinar. They said in the last one month dozens of residents were killed by militants and many others were abducted but authorities failed to provide security to the people.

The tribal elders asked the government to take decisive steps against the militants in the area and recover the kidnapped passengers forthwith. They asked the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governor to come forward and tackle the issue of militancy in Kurram Agency and compensate the bereaved families who lost near and dear ones to the militants.

Released woman says militants want their fellows released

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

PARACHINAR: The militants claimed to have attacked passenger vehicles on the Thall-Parachinar Road after the government's failure to accept their demands, including release of their captured associates.

Talking to reporters here on Tuesday, a woman, who was among the 47 passengers kidnapped by the militants five days back, said that her husband and three other passengers were killed by the militants soon after their kidnapping. The militants set free 12 persons, including seven children and five women, a few days after the kidnapping incidents. 

"The militants told us that they had attacked the passenger vehicles after the government's failure to accept their demands that included the release of their comrades," the widow of Kamal Hussain said. "The militants served us tea and told us that they did not want to harm us," the woman recalled. 

She said the militants asked her to convey their stance to the security forces and local elders. "The militants gave us some money as fare and dropped us on the Thall-Parachinar Road," she said, adding they had passed on the assertions of the militants to security forces.

Two slain soldiers laid to rest


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Two slain soldiers laid to rest

PARACHINAR: Two personnel of security forces who were killed in an ambush in Akakhel area of Khyber Agency were laid to rest with state honour in Parachinar, the Kurram Agency headquarters, on Tuesday. Fourteen soldiers, including two officers, were killed when militants attacked security forces in the violence-plagued Bara Tehsil of Khyber Agency late Monday. Among the slain soldiers, Arab Hussain and Sajid Hussain were the residents of Parachinar, who were laid to rest in their respective villages with state honour.