New peace pact to ensure Pak Army's withdrawal from Mehsud areas in S Waziristan
Peshawar | June 09, 2008 9:18:47 AM IST
If a draft of a proposed peace pact is to be believed, Pakistan Army will "withdraw completely" from the Mehsud areas of South Waziristan after Taliban commander Baitullah Mehsud frees the remaining captured Army and paramilitary soldiers.
"If Clause 10 (A) of the peace deal is honoured, the Army will vacate the Mehsud areas," reads Clause 11 of the draft peace agreement.
Clause 10 (A) of the draft peace pact refers to the release of "kidnapped Army and Frontier Corps soldiers by Baitullah in South Waziristan", reported the Daily Times.
Taliban commander in South Waziristan's Sararogha town Taj Muhammad reportedly said on May 24 that militants led by Baitullah were "still holding dozens of soldiers" captured during operations or ambushes.
The draft agreement does not include the condition of a commitment by the Mehsud tribes that they would not allow militants to continue cross-border movement for attacks on the US and NATO forces inside Afghanistan. NWFP Governor Owais Ahmed Ghani, however, says that it is a "sticking point" among all the stakeholders - the Taliban, the government and the coalition partners in the war on terror (the US and the NATO countries).
"Mehsud tribes say they cannot include this point in the agreement since they have no common border with Afghanistan, but our allies in war on terror say this clause of cross-border movement must be included in the agreement," the paper quoted Ghani as having said on May 28.
The Governor says the government is talking to the Mehsud tribes and not Baitullah, adding, "Let Baitullah say what he wants to say."
The 15-point draft agreement binds the Mehsud tribes to oust Al Qaeda-linked foreign militants from their areas in one month after the peace deal is signed, but also announces a possible two-month concession in this regard. It says that only those Taliban prisoners who have not been charged in a court of law will be released. (ANI)
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