UN official killing in Peshawar highlights fears of Swat displaced

Posted By: Staff
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Washington, July 17 (ANI): Thursday's terrorist attack in Peshawar in which a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) field officer was killed and another grievously injured, has raised questions over the government's claim that normalcy is slowly returning to the region after months of military operations against the extremists.

The Pakistan Army and the government has been claiming that the offensive in the North West Frontier Province (NWFP) is nearing its 'successful' end, and that it is now safe for the displaced people to return to their homes in the valley, but the incident has certainly highlighted the apprehensions of the refugees, The Christian Science Monitor reports.

While the government is urging the refugees to return to their native places, people fear facing a resurgent Taliban.

"This violence might be an attempt to frighten the people from returning to their respective districts," said Manzir Javed, administrator of a refugee camp in Mardan.

More than 2,100 of the camp's 9,000 people have already left for their homes in the past three days, but those who still remain in the camp are perplexed whether it's safe to return or not.

"We want to leave, but first we are watching when the curfew will be lifted," said Naik Amal who belongs to Kamba, a small town near Mingora.

With a large military presence in Mingora, the main town in Swat, and adjoining areas and checkpoints on the main road every 500 meters, the prime question is whether it is really safe to return and whether the region is really pacified enough for civilians. (ANI)

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