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Govt to release TTP footsoldiers as negotiations continue: report

TTP expected to agree to extension of month-long ceasefire that expires today
Published 09 Dec, 2021 05:37pm
In a video shared on social media, TTP's chief Noor Wali Mehsud was speaking to Northern Zone. File photo
In a video shared on social media, TTP's chief Noor Wali Mehsud was speaking to Northern Zone. File photo

The government has decided to release some members of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan who were in white and grey lists, reported The News on Thursday.

Quoting an official source, a report by Mushtaq Yousufzai said key prisoners of the TTP whose list had been given by the militant group to the government had not been released so far.

The government was releasing those TTP members who completed de-radicalisation courses and were still in custody or in internment centres, it quoted the official.

So far the release of high-profile militant groups's prisoners was delayed till it was decided whether these prisoners should be allowed to go to Afghanistan or “stay in their respective areas in Pakistan”, the source added.

“This issue as well as the court cases against high-profile Taliban prisoners need to be sorted out before they are freed,” said the official.

In an interview to BBC HARDtalk on Wednesday, National Security Adviser Dr Moeed Yusuf said the PTI-led government was ready to listen to officials of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan provided they respect Pakistan's laws.

"If they [the TTP] are apologizing and willing to go through the due process of the court of law, live under the Constitution of Pakistan, get punishments of all the crimes they have done, renounce violence forever, we are ready to listen to them," he told BBC interviewer Stephen Sackur.

So far, as per reports, 42 low-key TTP prisoners have been released and the proscribed group is expected to extend the month-long ceasefire, which was announced on Nov 9, to continue negotiations.

The government freed 30 prisoners on Friday, 12 on Tuesday and 50 on Wednesday, while at least 46 more prisoners were expected to be freed on Thursday (today), read the report.

According to the report, those released included Barkatullah from Khyber district; Abdul Wahid, Fazal Shah, Gul Said and Amjad from Mohmand; Ajmal Khan and Attaur Rahman from Bajuar; Umar and Adil Khan from Dir; Anwar Hussain from Swat; Mohammad Ismail and Mohib Rahman from Waziristan.

In a video shared on social media, TTP's chief Noor Wali Mehsud was speaking to Northern Zone, saying "TTP is a brand of the Islamic Emirates of Afghanistan. It is a part of the same umbrella.

"If you want Islamic system, it needs some resources. One of the biggest resource is being united and the TTP is the name of the collectivity," he said. "The existence of TTP, its charter has come to fore to implement Islamic system in the country."

"The Pakistani authorities have made a system in the country and labelled it democracy which is not the actual one. This is a jihad against it [the system]," he added.

Aaj Digital can't verify the authenticity of the video.

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