Seven men – including a former top commander of the Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) extremist outfit – were publicly executed by the group in the Bara sub-division of Khyber Agency for betraying the group.
The men had allegedly decided to rejoin Mangal Bagh’s outlawed outfit after having surrendered to the security forces some days earlier, officials revealed.
A local resident told The Express Tribune – requesting anonymity because of the security risks in the area – that Hazrat Khan, a former militant commander along with six others of his group were brought to the village of Speen Qabar, located in the Sipah area early in the morning.
“The men were brought in pick-up vans to a ground in the village,” he said.
“The LI men asked locals to gather around while announcing that the men were renegades who had raised an anti-LI militia to assist the security forces and were captured from the Alam Gudar area.”
Another witness said that two of the men were slaughtered publicly while the rest were sprayed with bullets.
“Hazrat Khan and Rehman were brutally tortured and killed,” he said. Source said that bodies of the executed men were handed over to their relatives in the area.
The assistant political agent for Bara, Bakhtiar Mohmand, while confirming the incident, told The Express Tribune that Hazrat Khan and his men had surrendered to the security forces. He added that two days back they decided to rejoin Mangal Bagh’s LI.
“They were negotiating with LI since the last two days. It seems the negotiations failed,” said Mohmand, while adding that Hazrat Khan was one of the most prominent commanders of Mangal Bagh.
The rest of the men were identified as Khalid, Sheray, Arabay, Khan Wazeer and Najib.
Fighting in Bara has forced almost 0.18 million people to flee the area and take shelter in camps in Nowshera.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 12th, 2012.