Taliban vow to enforce Shariah throughout Pakistan
Posted: Monday , Apr 20, 2009 at 1348 hrs IST
A resurgent Taliban in Pakistan’s northwestern Swat valley on Monday vowed to enforce Islamic laws across the country while ruling out the possibility of laying down arms following the implementation of Shariah in the region.
The Shariah or Islamic law regime approved recently by President Asif Ali Zardari will not be confined to Malakand division, which includes Swat, and the Taliban wants the system to be enforced in other parts of Pakistan, Taliban spokesman Muslim Khan said on Monday.
“(Shariah) is not only for Malakand division, it is for all humanity, for all Muslims. So we will go more for implementation of Quran, Shariah-e-Muhammadi, not only in Malakand division (but) other parts of Pakistan also,” Khan told ‘Dawn News’ channel in an interview.
He was responding to a question on whether the Taliban believed they had achieved their goal following the federal government’s approval for enforcing Shariah in Swat.
Islamic laws were enforced in Swat, located just 160 km from Islamabad, after religious hardliner Sufi Muhammad initiated peace talks with Taliban on behalf of government.
Asked about Sufi Muhammad’s assurance that the Taliban in Swat would surrender their weapons once Shariah is enforced in the region, Khan replied: “We don’t know about that because we are Pashtuns and any Pashtun has a gun”.
He indicated that Taliban would lay down arms only if the Islamic courts in Swat asked them to do so. “If the Shariah regulation will call (on) us that Taliban you keep your arms, we will keep (them). If the order from Qazi courts is no, we will say no,” Khan, who spoke in broken English, said.
The Taliban spokesman questioned why no one was asking for the disarming of “US forces” who were allegedly in Pakistan and killing Muslims.
“We are Muslims. If somebody is coming to kill my brother, we will stay… in Afghanistan and the Pashtun areas.
You are asking me to lay down my arms and nobody (is) asking the Americans. Why?” he asked.
Khan said the implementation of the Nizam-e-Adl Regulation, which envisages the enforcement of Shariah in Swat and Malakand, is the responsibility of Sufi Muhammad, the chief of the Tehrik-e-Nifaz-e-Shariah Muhammadi.
The Taliban will keep an eye on the progress made in this regard, he indicated.
The militant spokesman also dismissed criticism of the Shariah regime in Swat by Western powers, including the US. “We don’t care about the reaction of the government in Pakistan, other foreigners and the international community. We don’t care (about) that,” he asserted.
Khan also said the Pakistani Taliban wanted all Muslims to work for the creation of a “caliphate” comprising all Islamic nations.
Asked if he had a message for Muslims, he replied, “For Muslims it is necessary to come and make a caliphate, one army, one Shariah-e-Muhammadi, one currency and make unity.
“Like the 52 states of America, we should be 56 states of Muslims and we have to make one unity,” Khan added.
Taliban fighters led by Maulana Fazlullah, the son-in-law of Sufi Muhammad, now control most parts of Swat, which till two years ago was a popular tourist destination.
The militants openly patrol roads in the area and have barred women from venturing out of their homes unless they are accompanied by male relatives.
The militants have directed men to wear skull caps and stop shaving their beards. They have also torched or blown up nearly 200 girls’ schools.
Fazlullah regularly issues edicts on his illegal radio station and Sufi Muhammad yesterday told a gathering of thousands in Swat that democracy is an “un-Islamic” system.
Source : Indian Express||20.04.2009
Taliban wrath on couple
– Militants gun down Pak duo on ‘adultery’ charges
Islamabad, April 18 (PTI): A man and a woman, who were accused of committing adultery, were gunned down by the Taliban in northwest Pakistan a few days ago.
The chilling video footage of the execution was sent to the Dawn newspaper yesterday. It shows a Taliban firing squad killing the man and woman, both apparently in their forties, after accusing them of adultery.
They were shot dead in the presence of their relatives. The newspaper quoted its sources as saying that the incident took place in Hangu district of North West Frontier Province. The execution comes just two weeks after a video of a teenage girl being flogged by militants in the Swat Valley sent shockwaves across Pakistan.
In the new video, the woman is heard appealing to the Taliban militants for mercy. “Have mercy on me, please have mercy. The charges against me are false and no man has ever touched me,” she is heard saying.
The militants first pumped several bullets into the woman’s chest and then fired a burst from their assault rifles at her and the man. Seeing that the woman was still alive after being shot, some militants are heard shouting: “She is alive, kill her.”
Pakistani leaders and rights activists had condemned the public flogging of teenager Chand Bibi in the Swat Valley. Her ordeal was filmed in a two-minute mobile phone video.
It showed the burqa-clad 17-year-old girl being held face down on the ground by three men while a fourth whipped her repeatedly. A large crowd of men watched the flogging, which reportedly occurred in the Matta area of Swat a few weeks ago.
Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani ordered an inquiry into the matter and Supreme Court Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry took suo moto notice of the issue and sought regular reports from the government on the probe.
However, interior secretary Kamal Shah told a news conference at Saidu Sharief in Swat yesterday that an investigation team had concluded that the earlier video was fake.
The team, headed by a senior police official, had submitted a report on its probe that will be handed over to the apex court, he said. The team said no incident of flogging had occurred, Shah said.
Source : The Telegraph, Calcutta||19/04/09
Tags: Blocked Women Liberation in Pakistan, Darkness in Pakistan, Pakistan under Talibans, Shariah throughout Pakistan, Shariyat in Pakistan, Talibani age of Darkness in Pakistan, Violation of Human Rights in Pakistan