The Jamiat Ulama Islam (JUI-F) criticised the proposed Pakistan-US joint military operation in North Waziristan, saying it will have drastic consequences for the country.
Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, JUI-F Khyber Agency chapter amir Shamsuddin Afridi said the government should initiate negotiations instead of a military operation to resolve the conflict in North Waziristan.
He said the people of Pakistan’s tribal belt have defended the country’s western borders without any reward since 1947. Expressing fear that the joint military operation would spark a new wave of violence in the country, Afridi said the tribal people will never accept such operations on their soil.
He alleged that US, Nato and Afghan forces are directly involved in cross border incursions into Pakistan.
“If the Americans can start negotiations with the Taliban after ten years of war then why can’t Pakistan do the same,” Afridi questioned.
Showing solidarity with Myanmar’s Muslims, he urged the government to raise the issue on international forums including the United Nations. He demanded the government end diplomatic ties with Myanmar and expel its ambassador from the country. Afridi added that diplomatic pressure from Muslim countries might save the lives of thousands of Muslims in Myanmar.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 8th, 2012.