Islamabad: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan who is popular in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and particularly among the Pashtun population has extended his support for most of the demands voiced by the recently launched Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM). He termed the demands as “genuine”.
The leaders of PTM, mainly young activist Manzoor Pashteen, has often come for criticism by nationalist elements for drawing support from Afghan and foreign intelligence elements.
PTM was established following a campaign by tribal Mehsud youths following the extrajudicial killing of Naqeebullah Mehsud by Karachi police officials. PTM is now demanding justice for the extrajudicial killings, end to security check-posts in FATA and removal of mines in the area.
Speaking to media at the PTI FATA Convention held at the residence of PTI Senator Ayub Afridi in Peshawar, Imran Khan promised to meet army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa and discuss with him “easing security check-posts and removing landmines, besides the core issue of missing persons of the Federally Administered Tribal Area (FATA).”
PTI leader also maintained that after the 9/11 incident, tribal people suffered the most and faced daunting challenges and pledged to work for the development of Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) “if my party comes to power and is able to form government in all four provinces.”
He also promised to “immediately merge FATA and K-P after coming to power.”
Imran Khan claimed that PTI was the only party standing for the rights of FATA and its people, which is demanding a swift merger of FATA with K-P.
He also vowed that his party was in favour of an immediate merger of FATA with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) which according to him “is the only solution to all problems of the tribal people.”
K.P. Chief Minister Pervez Khattak, Speaker Provincial Assembly Asad Qaiser also attended the meeting.
On April 9, 2018 Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa met with the father of Naqeebullah, and condoled and offered prayers for the departed soul.
Speaking to the local tribal elders while meeting tribal leaders, the COAS said that due to efforts by local tribals and Pakistan Army, peace has been restored in the region. COAS urged local elders to not allow anyone to endanger the peace attained at heavy cost in terms of lives and money.
Local tribal leaders also thanked the Pakistan Army for restoration of peace and undertaking development works in the region.