‘Swat deal to be reviewed if peace doesn’t return’May 2nd, 2009 - 6:52 pm ICT by IANS
Lahore, May 2 (IANS) A controversial deal with the Taliban in Pakistan’s restive northwest would be reviewed if the militants don’t live up to their end of the bargain and peace doesn’t return to the area, Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani said Saturday.
“If agreement is not honoured by the other side and peace remains elusive, we would revisit and review the deal,” Gilani told reporters here.
“We would reconsider the deal,” he added for good measure.
The deal has been tottering ever since the military Sunday moved into action against the Taliban, first in the Lower Dir district of the North West Frontier Province (NWFP) and then in the Buner district that is just 100 km from Islamabad.
Under the Feb 16 deal between Taliban-backed radical cleric Sufi Mohammad and the NWFP government, Sharia laws would be imposed in the Malakand division of the province - that includes Swat, Buner and Lower Dir - in return for the militants laying down their arms.
Instead, the Taliban moved south from their Swat headquarters and occupied Buner.
Fierce fighting is currently underway in Lower Dir and Buner, with over 100 Taliban being killed in the former district alone.
Tags: bargain, controversial deal, fierce fighting, frontier province, gilani, good measure, islamabad, lahore, malakand division, militants, mohammad, north west frontier, nwfp, pakistan, prime minister, radical cleric, raza, restive northwest, swat, taliban