Taliban Stop Army Convoy from Entering Swat

A day after Pakistan Taliban retracted from the Buner district, the fighters on Saturday stopped a convoy of security personnel from entering their stronghold in the Swat Valley in Pakistan’s embattled north-west.

According to media reports, the heavily armed Swat Taliban stopped a convoy of seven security trucks from entering Mingora – the main city in the valley.

News agencies citing Taliban spokesman Muslim Khan said the deployment of troops in Swat was against a deal signed in February to introduce Islamic laws in Swat and other areas in the northwest.

There was no official reaction to the Taliban action, but reports citing unnamed sources said the deal allowed free movement of the forces in the Taliban-held regions.

Meanwhile, officials have confirmed that the fighters, who infiltrated Buner some 100 kilometers from Islamabad, have returned to their stronghold in Swat Valley.

VOA citing the Taliban spokesman said that the Swat Taliban fighters decided to abandon Buner for fear of jeopardizing the peace deal.

Pakistan’s army chief, General Ashfaq Kayani, in a statement on Friday said, the army “will not allow the militants to dictate terms to the government or impose their way of life on the civil society of Pakistan,” reported the Chinese news agency Xinhua.

The peace deal between the government and hard-line cleric Sufi Mohammed calls for militants to lay down arms, which is still to happen.

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