Jirga wants ceasefire revived for success of peace talks

Report
from DAWN Group of Newspapers
Published on 02 May 2014 View Original

PESHAWAR: A tribal jirga has called for revival of ceasefire to remove hitches in the peace talks between the Taliban and the government.

The jirga was organised by the Fata chapter of Jamaat-i-Islami at Nishtar Hall here on Thursday.

Sirajul Haq, the Jamaat’s emir, JUI-S chief Maulana Samiul Haq, Taliban committee member and JI’s provincial chief Prof Mohammad Ibrahim Khan, Taliban committee’s coordinator Maulana Yousuf Shah, former MNA Shah Abdul Aziz and Fata JI chief Sahibzada Haroon-ur-Rasheed spoke on the occasion.

In a joint declaration, the jirga praised the government and Taliban committees for playing a vital role in the peace process and appealed to all stakeholders — the government, Taliban and the army — to make it successful so that the nation’s expectations for restoration of peace were fulfilled.

The jirga stressed the need for restoration of peace in accordance with resolutions adopted by parliament and the `all-party conference’.

It urged the government to implement legal, political and economic reforms for welfare of the people in Fata.

Jamaat emir Sirajul Haq said restoration of peace depended on the federal government which could end the “game” whenever it wished.

He said tribal people were not violators of the constitution; the “real violators” were sitting in Islamabad.

“The real terrorists are those who are involved in corruption, loot and plunder which lead to price hike, unemployment, lawlessness and poverty.”

Mr Haq said those who wore turbans or sported beards were not terrorists. “The United States is the real terrorist.”

He said tribal people were protectors of the country’s borders. Winning confidence of tribal people was more important than making an atom bomb, he added.

The JI chief said despite fighting three wars with India, the government wanted to give the status of most-favoured nation to that country, but it was not ready to sprinkle water on the war with Taliban.

He said the Taliban were right in demanding enforcement of the Islamic system in the country.

He said that success of negotiations with the Taliban was the success of Pakistan and its failure would be tantamount to failure of the country.

“During the past 66 years none of the successive governments bothered to establish a university or a big hospital in tribal agencies and the people of Fata are treated like second-grade citizens,” he lamented.

Mr Haq said the green card holders were trying to teach patriotism to tribal people who actually suffered at the hands of both the government and the Taliban.

He said 10 million people of Fata supported the peace process because they wanted education, development and peace, not bloodshed, in their areas.

The JI leader warned the federal government to solve problems of tribal people otherwise he would lead them to Islamabad so that they could be heard properly.

JUI-S chief Maulana Samiul Haq asked the government and the Taliban to tolerate each other and work sincerely for the success of the talks.

He said the only solution to problems of the government was the success of the peace process.

He said development could remove the sense of deprivation among tribal people and it would lead to restoration of peace.

Professor Ibrahim urged the government to enforce the Islamic system, implement the constitution and give due rights to tribal people and as result of that the Taliban would accept the constitution.

“We are trying to bring the Taliban and the government on the negotiating table and will continue to point out mistakes of stakeholders for the sake of peace,” he said.

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