News / Asia

Pakistan Divided Over How to Deal with Militant Threat

Pakistan's Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf speaks to the media at a military hospital, where he visited Malala Yousufzai, in Rawalpindi, October 12, 2012.Pakistan's Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf speaks to the media at a military hospital, where he visited Malala Yousufzai, in Rawalpindi, October 12, 2012.
x
Pakistan's Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf speaks to the media at a military hospital, where he visited Malala Yousufzai, in Rawalpindi, October 12, 2012.
Pakistan's Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf speaks to the media at a military hospital, where he visited Malala Yousufzai, in Rawalpindi, October 12, 2012.
Sharon Behn
— Despite the outrage over the Taliban's shooting of teenage activist Malala Yousafzai, Pakistan's government has failed to gather enough support for a military operation against the extremists believed to be behind the attack.The political divisions in Pakistan over what to do with militants living within its borders remain as strong as ever despite the national shock over the attack.  
 
Days after thousands of Pakistanis rallied in support of the gravely wounded Malala Yousafzai, political leaders continue to squabble over what to do about the Taliban militants behind the attack.   
 
Prime Minister Raza Pervez Ashraf on Thursday insisted terrorism had to be eliminated.

He says, terrorism has left thousands of victims and all Pakistanis need to fight the extremist mindset that is destroying Pakistan from within.  
 
The ruling People’s Party this week tried to table a resolution in Parliament referring to a military operation in Waziristan. The tribal region is the stronghold for a number of extremist militant groups, including al-Qaida and the Pakistani Taliban who attacked Yousafzai.
 
Opposition party leaders and the head of one of Pakistan’s major Islamic parties, Maulana Fazlur Rehman, shot the idea down.
 
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz representative Saddiq ul-Farooq said his party refused to back the move because such an operation now would displace millions and push the extremists to more violence.
 
"We have to deal with this issue with reason, not with military might, military might will be part of that reasonable formula - that if by presenting them very acceptable positive and constructive conditions, if they don’t come to terms, then we can use force," ul-Farooq stated.

For ul-Farooq, the presence of international forces in Afghanistan and the Pakistani government’s position as an official ally of the United States is inciting attacks on Pakistani soil.
 
He says once U.S. and coalition troops leave Afghanistan, the Pakistan Taliban will no longer have a reason to attack.  
 
Analyst Ayesha Siddiqa says despite the shock of the attack on Malala Yousafzai there is no agreement between the government and the opposition on a consensus to fight the militants.
 
What resulted, she says, is not much more than political melodrama.
 
“What is not happening here, is people coming together and saying, whatever the source of violence, we have to put an end to it. We have to put an end to sacrificing our soldiers, our children, our men and women. That is not happening,” said Siddiqa.
 
So far, Interior Minister Rehman Malik has announced a $1 million bounty for the Pakistani Taliban’s main spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan, who announced the Taliban was responsible for the attack on 14-year-old Yousafzai.   
 
Her alleged attacker had been detained by the military during a large offensive against the Taliban in the area in 2009. He was subsequently let go because of a lack of evidence tying him to the extremist group.  
 
Yousafzai was shot in the head October 9, on her way back from school in Pakistan’s Swat valley region.
 
Doctor's in the British hospital where she is recuperating say they are optimistic about her recovery.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: marvin nubwaxer
October 19, 2012 10:22 AM
it's how they live and it's what they do. they have the government they want and deserve or they would change it. they've suckered us into given them billions in extortion and still hate us and work against us. and they have nuclear weapons.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnelsi
X
July 24, 2014 4:42 AM
The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video MH17's 'Black Boxes' Could Reveal Crash Details

The government of Malaysia now has custody of the cockpit voice and flight data recorders from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was hit by a missile over Ukraine before crashing last week. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports, the so-called black boxes may hold information about the final minutes of the flight.
Video

Video Living in the Shadows Panel Discussion

Following a screening of the new VOA documentary, "AIDS - Living in the Shadows," at the World AIDS conference in Melbourne, a panel discussed the film and how to combat the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid