Pak govt red-faced as residents stage anti-terror protest in Swat Valley: Report | World News - Hindustan Times

Pak govt red-faced as residents stage anti-terror protest in Swat Valley: Report

Oct 08, 2022 10:46 AM IST

The protests in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa comes at a time when Islamabad is trying to gain mileage from US ambassador Donald Blome's visit to PoK where he referred to the occupied Indian territory as ‘Azad Jammu and Kashmir.’

Hundreds of protesters took to the streets in Swat Valley of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa against terror, demanding that the Shehbaz Sharif government take decisive action against terrorism or they will be forced to take up arms if the regime fails.

The Matta Chowk in Swat's Khwazakhela tehsil witnessed a massive gathering called by Swat Olasi Pasoon and Swat Quami Jirga, Pakistan daily Dawn reported.

Residents of Swat in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa stage protest against terror.
Residents of Swat in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa stage protest against terror.

The protest is nothing short of an embarrassment for the Pakistan Army and the civilian government who sought to gain diplomatic brownie points after US ambassador to Pakistan Donald Blome visited Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir (PoK) and referred to it as Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

Swat Valley has been witnessing a surge in protests in recent times with residents aggressively taking to streets against the presence of terrorists in the region. The protesters have also called out the government for allegedly blocking internet in most parts of the Swat region and causing hardships to thousands of students.

Pakistan has been witnessing a surge in terror activities with September recording 42 terrorist attacks in the Islamic Republic, Express Tribune reported.

Even the United States has urged its citizens to reconsider travel to Pakistan. In its travel advisory on Friday, the US State Department urged its people not to travel to Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces due to incidents of terror and kidnapping.

The Sharif government has also issued a nationwide alert asking authorities to maintain extreme vigilance amid a heightened risk of terror attacks by the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan after the talks with the terror group had stalled.

In its report to the Pakistan parliament, the interior ministry said that the country witnessed 434 terror attacks on security forces during the first six months of 2022, claiming the lives of at least 323 soldiers.

According to PTI, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa witnessed the highest number of terror attacks on security forces, i.e 247.

The Pakistani government had also said it learnt about the TTP leadership having met in Afghanistan's Paktika to discuss the deadlock in the peace talks and the fate of the negotiations with the government following the killing of commanders Omar Khalid Khorasani and Aftab Parkay, PTI reported.

The Pakistani government has claimed that the TTP leadership might look to carry out terror attacks in upcoming days to avenge the killing of the top commanders. The Establishment also said it received reports of TTP terrorists trying to migrate into north and south Waziristan from Afghanistan to set up cam for future attacks.

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