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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Pakistani tribal elders launch operation to capture wanted men

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad, Jan 20, IRNA -- A tribal lashkar (army) in Pakistan tribal 
areas, bordering Afghanistan, on Tuesday launched operation against 
tribesmen accused of providing shelter to al-Qaeda and Taliban, 
reports from the area said. 
Hundreds of armed tribesmen demolished a castle-like house of one 
Maulvi Abbas Wazir Kakakhel in South Waziriatan tribal agency. Maulvi 
Abbas, accused of sheltering suspected al-Qaeda members escaped prior 
to the operation was launched. 
Maulvi Abbas was asked to surrender but he refused and fled the 
area. 
The tribal elders have already handed over 21 wanted men to the 
local authorities since the operation has been launched. 
The local administrative officer Muhammad Azam Khan said that the 
para-military scouts have not taken part in the operation and that it 
was launched only by the local tribesmen. 
Tribal elders have expressed the hope that other wanted men would 
surrender after they knew the fate of Maulvi Abbas. 
The government has sought more than 50 such local tribesmen. The 
tribal leaders are cooperating with the government after an agreement,
which stops the military from taking any action against them. 
Last month the Pakistan Army conducted an operation to capture 
what it described as `foreign terrorists` hiding foreign terrorists 
near Wana, the center of South Waziristan. However, they failed to 
find any. 
Pakistan is a key US ally in the battle against al-Qaeda. The 
government has rounded up more than 500 al-Qaeda suspects and turned 
them over to the United States. 
TK/TSH/AH/210 
End 



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