The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) urged the government on Wednesday to respect the ceasefire, alleging that some elements in the government’s ranks were trying to derail the peace process.
“The Pakistani security agencies have been continuing their activities in different areas despite the declaration of a one-month ceasefire. Bombings and search operations are being carried out in Bajaur and Mohmand tribal regions,” TTP central spokesman Shahidullah Shahid said in a statement.
The TTP declared the ceasefire on March 1 to revive the stalled dialogue process between their intermediaries and government negotiators. Reciprocating the move, the government had also suspended surgical air strikes against the Taliban in the tribal areas.
“Several innocent people have been detained in Karachi, Peshawar, Swabi, Charsadda and Kulachi during search operations and raids,” the TTP spokesman said.
He alleged that detainees in Karachi and Ghalani in Mohmand Agency have been subjected to torture. “Prisoners locked in cells are being tortured and they are unnecessarily being shifted from Karachi Central Jail to interior Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan,” he added.
The TTP spokesman said that relatives of the prisoners were facing problems in dealing with cases and meetings because of the transfer of prisoners. “We do not understand the logic behind this decision,” Shahid went on to say.
“The TTP fully respects the ceasefire and has also disowned groups like Ahrarul Hind and Jundullah. However, many elements in the government are trying to derail the peace process. The government should control and reprimand them,” he said.
He said the TTP would make serious efforts to take the dialogue process forward and would not allow any member to violate the ceasefire. “We expect the government will take immediate notice and will focus on calling these incidents to a halt.”
Published in The Express Tribune, March 13th, 2014.