LAHORE: Less than 24 hours after the attack on an alleged madrassah in North Waziristan that killed at least 22 persons, there are already indications that feelings of hatred and anger are rising in response to the incident.
HRCP condemns the failure to provide an accurate account of the incident and that loss of life of persons who have not been identified, and must be presumed innocent unless proven otherwise. Whereas we have consistently opposed all forms of militancy, HRCP reiterates the acts of violence of this kind will only lead to further attacks and a still greater loss of life. The people of Pakistan are not dispensable commodities who can be killed in such a fashion.
It is also saddening that the government of Pakistan has declined to provide details of the incident. The statement by the ISPR, that a blast occurred within the madrassah, is hardly credible in the light of eyewitness accounts regarding the involvement of a US drone. Similar lies have been told before – following attacks in Bajaur, Balochistan and elsewhere.
HRCP would also like to state that attempts to either strike dubious deals with militants or to annihilate them, both of which have been attempted in Waziristan and elsewhere, will not serve any purpose. Indeed, attacks conducted in secrecy will only lend support to the militant causing by arousing a sense of outrage among citizens who have been kept in the dark regarding the so-called ‘battle against terror’.
In the longer run, militant violence, which has taken deep root in Pakistan – and is supported by thoughtless statements such as that recently made by the minister of religious affairs – will only grow unless holistic and wide-ranging measures are taken. These must include measures to address the acute socio-economic needs of people and to re-build the levels of tolerance that have slumped lower and lower over the last few decades.