Aftermath of war: Govt launches Fata refugees return strategy

Published: April 8, 2015
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Ministers trot out usual lines but offer no long-term reforms. PHOTO: REUTERS

Ministers trot out usual lines but offer no long-term reforms. PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: Authorities in Pakistan launched on Monday the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) Sustainable Return and Rehabilitation Strategy amid pledges of financial support.

The event was replete with speeches by dignitaries and lists of figures. Only one thing was missing: an actual strategy to sustainably rehabilitate the people of the tribal areas.

The ‘strategy’ the government was launching refers to the Rs75.4 billion that are to be spent on helping people affected by the government’s war against the Taliban and other militants to return to their homes in the tribal areas. It was jointly launched by the Federal Ministry for States and Frontier Regions (Safron) and Fata development authority in Islamabad.

The event was attended by Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Governor Mehtab Abbasi, Safron Minister Abdul Qadir Baloch, as well as the ambassadors of the United States, the European Union, China, Japan, and representatives from the United Nations as well as other countries.

The participants insisted that the government had developed a strategy that involved political, constitutional and administrative reforms in Fata to help ensure that the hard-fought peace is sustainable.

However, they failed to present any actual strategy that involved such measures. “The state has to figure out a multi-pronged strategy for a sustainable development in the tribal areas,” said Governor Abbasi.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 8th, 2015. 

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