More families return after Waziristan offensive


ISLAMABAD: Dozens of families have returned to South Waziristan with UN and government help to rebuild their lives after major fighting against the Taliban, a UN official said Sunday.
Thirty-five families were returned Sunday with 48 families already having resettled on Saturday under a repatriation process due continue until next year, the official said. “Thirty-five families left today from northwestern city of Tank to return home,” UN refugee agency (UNHCR) spokeswoman Ariane Rummery told AFP.
Rummery said the UNHCR was helping people returning home with transport, tents and other non-food and household items, adding that the government was giving each family 25,000 Pakistani rupees (292 dollars). The process is expected to see people from 8,000 registered families go to more than 10 villages in South Waziristan, part of the tribal areas that Washington has branded a global headquarters of Al-Qaeda and the most dangerous place on Earth.
“There is strong desire among people living in camps to return home,” Rummery added. The Pakistani military carried out a sweeping offensive last year into parts of South Waziristan in order to disable the headquarters of the country’s main Taliban faction, following an increase in militant bomb attacks in late 2009.
Many of the Taliban commanders and their footsoldiers are believed to have fled into the neighbouring district of North Waziristan, where Pakistan has so far resisted American pressure for a similar offensive, and into Orakzai. An estimated 364,028 people are thought to have fled South Waziristan for districts under government control that neighbour tribal belt.
85% of Orakzai Agency cleared, affectees will be compensated: FC
PESHAWAR: Writ of the government has been established in most of the areas of Orakzai agency which have been cleared of militants, Inspector General Frontier Corps (IGFC) Major General Nadir Zaib said while talking to reporters on Sunday.
Peace has been established in 85 percent of the area and they have been handed over to the respective political administrations, he said, adding that the militants had been eradicated and their hideouts had been dismantled.
People had extending full support to the security forces, he said, adding that the affectees of operation will be compensated. APP