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Taliban seize girls’ schoolThe Taliban get ready to destroy the west, girls schools, freedom, democracy, liberty and life
25/06/2008

Khar – Pakistani Taliban militants seized a government-run girls school and
re-named it after an Islamabad madrassa destroyed in a bloody siege last
year, residents and officials said Wednesday.

The hardliners hoisted their flag atop the school in Pusht, a town in the
lawless Bajaur tribal district and named it Jamia Hafsa after the girls’
seminary connected to the Red Mosque in the capital, they said.

More than 100 people died in a week-long siege and subsequent operation to
clear Al-Qaeda-linked militants from the Red Mosque and Jamia Hafsa in July
2007. The school was badly damaged and later bulldozed.

“We are trying to convince them through local elders to vacate the
building,” local administration official Iqbal Khan said.

Residents said armed men led by local Taliban leader Qari Naimatullah
forcibly took control of the school on Tuesday and warned that other female
schools in the area would be seized to be used for religious education.

‘The Western system of education is not good for girls’

“We want to convert it into a madrassa, because the Western system of
education is not good for girls,” Naimatullah’ s spokesperson Ghulam Waheed
told AFP.

“We have named it as Jamia Hafsa to avenge the attack on the Red Mosque’s
madrassa which was razed to the ground during an army operation last year,”
he said.

He criticised the previous government for not rebuilding the large seminary
for female students run by the Red Mosque.

“We will take over other schools also and name them after Jamia Hafsa,” he
said.

President Pervez Musharraf ordered the military to storm the hard-line
mosque after a lengthy siege.

The raid provoked anger among Islamic militants, particularly in lawless
tribal areas along the Afghan border, and sparked an upsurge in deadly
violence, including suicide attacks.

Bajaur is a stronghold of Taliban militants who have been blamed for a wave
of bombings in Pakistan over the last year. The rebels began peace talks
with the new government after it came to power in March.

AFP

 

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