Monday, May 23, 2011

Tribal violence: 8 dead in Kurram Agency clashes

The Express Tribune

Tribal violence: 8 dead in Kurram Agency clashes

Published: May 23, 2011
Fighting caused by dispute over installation of electricity pylons but conflagrated into sectarian violence.
At least eight people were killed and 12 others were injured in clashes between two tribes in Kurram Agency late on Saturday, local sources said.
Sources told The Express Tribune that the clashes occurred in parts of Sadda sub-district in Lower Kurram Agency. Both parties, they said, were heavily armed.
"Fighting is going on between residents of Pewar Killay and Teri Mangal areas and on late Saturday, at least eight people were killed and 12 others injured. Warring tribes attacked each other's positions but it is not clear which tribe has suffered how many casualties," sources said.
According to sources, the fighting started following a dispute over installation of electricity pylons in the area and soon conflagrated into sectarian fighting.
Sources said that the fighting stopped later on Sunday but there were no reports of a ceasefire between the warring parties.
Kurram's population of 500,000 has a Shia majority, according to official statistics. Since 2007, things have been particularly grim, notes UN's information arm IRIN. That year, the main road linking Parachinar on the Pakistan-Afghan border to Peshawar was closed due to militant activity, resulting in acute shortages of essential items in Parachinar, according to observers such as the autonomous Human Rights Commission of Pakistan.
A peace deal was reached between warring Shia and Sunni tribes in Kurram Agency in February 2011. The deal was brokered by security forces and guaranteed by members of the Haqqani network – a branch of the Afghan Taliban, allegedly based in Pakistan. But barely a month later, a convoy was ambushed by gunmen who killed eight people and kidnapped 15 others. All those attacked were Shia.
Sunni tribes have also come under attack, but loss of life has not been reported. In April 2011, unidentified gunmen kidnapped at least 10 schoolchildren from the Bagan area of the Lower Kurram Agency. The kidnapped children were said to be from Sunni families.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 23rd, 2011.

8 killed in Kurram clashes

Our correspondent
Monday, May 23, 2011
SADDA: At least eight persons were killed and 17 others sustained injuries in clashes between armed groups of Turi and Bangash tribes in Balishkhel village of troubled Kurram Agency on Sunday, tribal sources said. 

The sources said that both sides used heavy weapons during the clashes that erupted on Saturday and were continuing unabated. 

The sources said that eight persons from both sides were killed and 17 others sustained injuries in the clashes that quickly turned into a sectarian strife.

Some of the dead were identified as Delawar Hussain, Ishaq Hussain, Syed Mujahid Hussain and Kausar Ali who belonged to the Turi and Bangash tribes. 

The security forces had warned the armed groups to vacate their trenches by 2 p.m. on Sunday, otherwise action would be taken against them, the sources added. 

The sources said the security forces entered the area and launched action against the groups but there was no report about any casualty yet. 

Meanwhile, addressing a news conference at the Sadda Press Club, the elders of six tribes including Malik Hassan Jan, Malik Fazal Qadir, Haji Shahu Khan and Abdul Karim alleged that the rival group opened fire on them when they, along with political administration officials, were busy in abandoning their positions and vacating the trenches. Also the villagers started shifting their families to safer places from Balishkhel village after the clashes.

The Nation Newspaper Pakistan
PARACHINAR (INP) - At least nine persons were killed and several others injured in an armed clash between two rival tribes in Lower Kurram Agency on Sunday morning. 
Sources said that Balishkhel and Kharklay tribes residing in Lower Kurram had been exchanging firing for the past three days but on Sunday it took an ugly turn when both sides exchanged indiscriminate fire. The clashes erupted as slain police sub-inspector Raza Hussain was being buried in Balishkhel. Rockets were fired at the graveyard.
from Kharklay which triggered the fire exchange.
During the fire duel, both sides used heavy and automatic weapons against each other and at least nine people belonging to both groups were killed while several others sustained wounds.

Daily Times
Nine killed in tribal clash in Kurram
PARACHINAR: Nine people were killed and several others were injured during renewed clashes between tribes in Balishkhel and Khwarclay in Lower Kurram Agency, official sources said on Sunday. The conflict between the tribes in Balishkhel and Khwarclay started in the morning when both sides opened fire on each other. As a result, nine people were killed and several others were injured. Separaretly, the situation in Shalozan, Bughdai and Luqmankhel in Upper Kurram Agency was also tense after rockets attack near the Pak-Afghan border. The Khasadar Force has beefed up security and started patrolling these areas. app