Peace agreement revived in Pakistan border region

Authorities and tribal elders in Pakistan's North Waziristan have reached agreement to revive a peace deal.

Peace agreement revived in Pakistan border region
According to the Pakistani daily, Dawn, a grand jirga of 286 tribal elders from Dawar and Wazir sub-tribes of Utmanzai gathered at the agency headquarters in Miramshah on Sunday morning to discuss future action following the expiry of a unilateral ceasefire by fighters.

The ceasefire, first announced on 17 December was extended five times and was due to expire on Feb 17 - a day ahead of the country's national and provincial elections.

Witnesses said that the grand jirga reached an agreement to revive the September 2006 peace deal with the government.

The government withdrew security forces from checkpoints, released fighters and paid damages. But tribal elders said that the latest agreement would be different.

Unlike the old agreement which had been signed by fighters, the latest endorsement had come from 280-odd tribal elders who would also work to implement it, instead of the old 45-member monitoring committee that had failed to oversee its implementation.

They also pledged to extend the terms of the agreement to the whole of North Waziristan, including Miramshah and Mirali.

Local residents told Dawn that the endorsement had brought relief to the people who were worried about the resumption of hostilities if talks had failed.

Significantly, fighters in North Waziristan remained neutral as security forces launched an operation in neighbouring South Waziristan against fighters led by Tehreek-e-Taliban chief and military commander, Baitullah Mehsud.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 18 Şubat 2008, 20:20