October 2005 News

Curfew relaxed for 7 hours in Gilgit

22 October 2005
The Daily Times
Ibrahim Shahid

Gilgit: The local administration relaxed the curfew in Gilgit for seven hours on Saturday.The relaxation came from 800am to 300pm on the 10th day of the curfew's imposition, in view of a gradual improvement in law and order in the area. The curfew was imposed on October 13 following clashes between local Shias and the Rangers, which left 13 people, including two Rangers personnel, dead and several others injured.The locals, particularly women, came out in large numbers to shop for Eid. Rangers and police were deployed in all shopping markets, main roads and service roads of the city. Sources said that the security forces have set up new checkpoints and bunkers in various areas and have left areas where life has returned to normal.Banks were reopened for transaction, but attendance in offices and private firms remained low. Meanwhile, a 35-member jirga met in Chinarbagh on Saturday to resolve the ongoing conflict between Shias and Sunnis in the area. Chaired by the Northern Areas Legislative Council Speaker Malik Muhammad Miskeen and attended by local dignitaries, the jirga resolved to implement peace agreements between the sects in the past. The jirga observed that its efforts had been unsuccessful in the past due to the 'hypocrisy and duplicity' of a few members. 'Few people condemn violence in public, and even encourage militants secretly,' said a jirga member. 'This frustrates our efforts for peace.' The jirga adjourned until today (Sunday), when it plans to devise a comprehensive strategy to implement past peace agreements.


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