Islamabad, Pakistan: Thousands of people in the Khyber tribal district of Khyber Pakhtunkwa province demonstrated against the targeted killing and demanded the government to restore peace in the district and provide security to them.
The huge gathering titled Khyber Amn (peace) March was organised by Khyber Siyasi Ittehad. The protestors holding white flags marched through the different roads before converging at the main Bara Bazaar, Dawn reported.
They demanded that the government take notice of acts of terrorism, targeted killings of personnel of law enforcement agencies and rising incidents of extortion.
According to Dawn, the former Member of the National Assembly, Malak Waris Khan, while addressing the gathering, said that the residents of Khyber were peace-loving people and had always raised the slogan of peace but now they could no more tolerate militancy and insecurity.
“The last decade of militancy from 2005 to 2015 caused huge losses to them,” he said, asking the federal government to take steps for ensuring peace in all the tribal districts at the pattern of Islamabad, Lahore and other big cities of the country.
“It is the responsibility of the state to restore peace. We demand of the state authorities to provide a peaceful environment to the people of militancy-affected Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as they can no more tolerate terrorism and militancy,” said the former lawmaker.
A local leader of Jamaat-i-Islami, Haji Momin Khan, said that their youth were the first target of extremism with most of them losing their lives while scores of educational institutions were also destroyed that seriously affected the education of the tribal youth.
“The peace march awakened the tribal youth of their deep slumber and they were now demanding lasting peace in the entire merged region,” said a young political activist Naseeb Gul.
He further said that living in peace was a universal right of every human being and the people of Khyber in particular and the rest of the merged districts, in general, were demanding that constitutional right.
The protests against the targeted killing have been rampant in North Waziristan as several such cases of targeted killings were reported in North Waziristan over the past months. Earlier, the workers of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl and Utmanzai tribes also been protesting in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s North Waziristan against the killing of its local leaders and lawlessness in the district.
The workers of several political parties and local residents staged month long a sit-in around the Eidek area near the Mirali town starting on July 29. People have been demanding from the government to take action against the target killers and maintain law and order situation in the district for peaceful living.