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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Pak troops re-deployed in tribal area: reports

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad, May 18, IRNA -- Pakistan has re-deployed troops in its 
tribal region near the Afghan border for possible action after foreign
militants failed to accept an offer of amnesty. 
The local press said on Tuesday that the troops had been sent to 
South Waziristan after the latest in a series of deadlines for the 
amnesty passed last Saturday. 
In a major army operation in March, 120 people died, including 48 
soldiers, until the government opted for negotiations. Under an 
agreement, local tribals harboring foreign elements laid down their 
arms and promised not to help them. 
The security chief for the tribal belt, Brigadier (Ret`d) Mahmood 
Shah, the press said, accused influential tribal leader Nek Mohammad 
on Monday of refusing to cooperate with the government on registration
of the foreigners. 
President General Pervez Musharraf has said that remnants 
belonging to Al-Qaeda and Taliban hiding in the tribal areas had been 
involved in terrorist acts in Pakistan and had also masterminded and 
executed two attempts on his life in recent months. 
In a related development, according to press reports, Nek 
Mohammad on Monday dissociated himself from the ranks of foreign 
suspects and offered to back up military operations against them. 
The militant has reportedly said he was prepared to abide by the 
agreement with the government and cooperate with the tribe assigned 
the task of locating the foreign elements. 
The issue of registration of foreigners which the government 
insisted was part of the agreement and which Nek Mohammad said was 
not, had led to a standoff, sparking fears of another military 
operation in the region. 
On the other hand, a tribal lashkar had been formed to deal with 
the foreigners if they continued to shy away from registration. 
Nek has been quoted as saying that foreigners were no longer in 
the region. 
MHA/TSH/LS/210 



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