Militants `still a threat` in border areas
By Our Correspondent
KHAR, Oct 14: Peace was restored in Bajaur Agency but militants could still pose a threat in the border areas, said Political Agent Abdul Jabar Shah here on Monday.
Addressing a jirga of Mandal tribe, he said that normalcy returned to the region after elimination of terrorists, however, durable peace would need some time.
The tribal elders, members of peace committees and senior officials attended the jirga. The elders of Mandal tribe assured the local administration of their support in maintaining writ of the government in the region.
`There are still threats from militants in the areas along the Afghan border,` the political agent told the jirga.
He urged the tribal elders to realise the situation and remain alert to face challenges because it was responsibility of every citizen to defend the area against anti-state elements.
Mr Shah asked the elders to speed up their anti-militant activities and fulfil their collective responsibility with honesty and commitment.
`Joint efforts are very essential for maintaining peace and complete elimination of militants in the area. The tribesmen should speed up their antimilitants efforts in the region,` he said.
The official lauded the tribal eldersfor their contribution in the restoration of peace in the area, saying they had always rendered great sacrifices for the protection of country`s boundaries.
The jirga was also addressed by tribal elders and leaders of peace committees including Mian Masood Jan, Malik Nosherwan Khan, Malik Rahat, Malik Mohammad Rahman and Malik Zahir Shah.
They said that tribesmen of the area were fully alert to meet any challenge.
They said that no one would be allowed to disturb peace of the area.
`We are ready to face any challenge in the area. New posts have been established and anti-militant activities have been extended to the border areas, the elders said.
The jirga imposed ban on providing shelter to suspected elements, foreigners and non-local people in the area. It also decided to impose a fine of Rs2 million on any local tribesman if he was found guilty of providing shelter to suspected elements in the limits of Mandal tribe.
The elders demanded of the administration and the federal government to provide special development package to Mandal tribe.
They said that Mandal tribesmen were peace loving citizens and always rendered sacrifices for restoration of peace and writ of the government but they were ignored by the authorities.