Fatima Khurshid of Bajaur Agency, mother of four kids informed that continued fighting and fear had been damaging their children mentally. "The women can a big role in restoration of peace in the world," she said.
She dispelled the impression that the people of Tribal Areas have been hating the Americans. "These people are the real terrorists, but the rulers due to their vested interest have given free hand to them. Only the terrorists should be targeted. These terrorists instead of killing should be arrested and brought to the court of justice so the people can be told about their crimes. "War should be stopped forthwith," she demanded.
The civil society organizations also staged a protest rally and took out procession here on Tuesday to condemn the brutal killing of 83 innocent people in missile strikes in Bajaur Agency on Monday.
The protest was led by Alliance for Protection of Human Rights (APHR) and participated by lawyers, journalists, councilors, political, social activists, members of the assembly and trade union unionists. The protesters started the march towards the Governor's House to register their protest. They were raising slogans against the killing in Bajaur in a missile strikes. However, a heavy contingent of police stopped midway, saying the protest was not allowed outside the Governor's House. The angry civil society activists, comprising a good number of women, staged a sit-in on the road near the Governor's House and chanted slogans against the government for carnage in the Bajaur agency.
The speeches were also made on the occasion. The speakers said that it was not the first time that innocent civilians had been hit by U.S. missiles during its military strikes on suspected al-Qaeda hideouts. " It reminds us of killing of 18 innocent people, mostly women and children in similar missile attacks in Damadola area of the Bajaur Agency when the US raided the area on January 13, this year," they added.
They noted with concern that civilians were being targeted under on the pretext of war on terror in the last few years in the tribal areas, saying the cold-blooded killing at a seminary in Chenagai village of the Bajaur Agency was a continuation of the brutal war on people.
The speakers disputed the official claim that the raids had been conducted by the local forces, saying it was the age of free media where facts could not be swept under the carpet. "The US television channel, ABC report that a US Predator plane had fired the missiles at the seminary in Bajaur leaves no doubt about the US involvement," they pointed out.
They recalled that on several occasions in the past, the indiscriminate aerial bombing, rocket and missile shelling had caused enormous human loss, mostly civilians, besides damaging property in the tribal areas. " It is regrettable to note that 40 people were killed to greet US President Gorge Bush on his arrival in Pakistan while the blood of the 83 people has been shed to welcome and appease the royal couple from Britain", said Ms Rukhshanda Naz, Resident Director of Aurat Foundation, while addressing the gathering. Other speakers said the human rights and civil liberties could not be trampled for whatsoever reasons or goals. The rights, property, dignity and honor of the people must be protected as the so-called war on terror is fast turning into a war of terror. They asked the U.S. and Pakistani authorities to immediately stop such inhuman acts and demanded a high-level inquiry into the Bajaur killing to bring to the book those responsible for the carnage.