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Musharraf's Dilemma in War on Terrorism

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The double game being played by Pakistan in the war against terrorism has been exposed to the world -- as both the Taliban and terrorists have been strengthening their position.  A group of Taliban have declared a styled government in Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan, but thus far, no action has been taken against them.

The pathetic part of this whole episode is that presently, the government has been holding negotiations with the Taliban and terrorists in Islamabad, but in the past, rulers have avoided talks with Taliban in the tribal areas. This act of the government of Pakistan shows a double standard of the rulers. According to the people, there should be no compromise on the elimination of Talibanisation, as according to them, they have been posing a threat to the very existence of the world.

The Bush administration should fulfill the promise made with the Americans and people of other parts of the world about the eradication of terrorism. This is a war of credibility for the United States. The people of tribal areas have also been looking towards the United States to liberate them from terrorism and the Taliban.

According to a newspaper report, the government has agreed to accept all demands put forward by the Lal Masjid management, including the enforcement of Sharia in the country.

The second round of talks started when Pakistan Muslim League president Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain paid a surprise visit to Lal Masjid and met its in-charge Maulana Abdul Aziz and deputy in-charge Maulana Abdul Rashid Ghazi.

The PML chief assured the mosque administration and girl students of Jamia Hasfa that the government was ready to accept all their demands, including the enforcement of Sharia. Talking to journalists after the meeting, Chaudhry Shujaat said all contentious issues between the government and Lal Masjid clerics had been settled, adding that he would explain details of the talks before the parliament on Wednesday.

Responding to a question about the situation inside the mosque, the Pakistan Muslim League president denied the presence of activists of banned outfits and illegal arms in the mosque.

President General Musharraf had said many times in the recent past that the mosque administration had provided shelter to suicide bombers. Two security officials, who were made hostage by the students of Jamia Hasfa last month, had also told the media that they had seen a bulk of arms and ammunitions in the mosque. About enforcement of Shariat, the PML chief said: “No Muslim rejects the enforcement of the Islamic system in the country.”

The ruling party chief also met two sisters who had taken refuge in Lal Masjid after being sexually abused by an influential man in Jehlum. He assured the victims that they would be provided justice and the accused would be punished.

He said the district police office of Jhelum would visit Lal Masjid on Wednesday and would register a case against the accused, Azhar Iqbal. Later, Chaudhry Shujaat took a look around of Jamia Hafsa and said that female students were studying in a good atmosphere.

The first round of talks was suspended after a military helicopter had continued hovering over the mosque for 20 minutes last week. The mosque administration condemned what it called aerial surveillance of the mosque and spraying of some gases.

These types of reports were the clear depiction of a double standard of Pakistan rulers. According to elders and maliks of tribal areas, more pressure should be built on Pakistan for controlling terrorism in the country and tribal areas.


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Muhammad Khurshid, a resident of Bajaur District, tribal areas situated on Pak-Afghan border is journalist by profession. He contributes articles and news stories to various online and print newspapers. His subject matter is terrorism. He is (more...)

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