misunderstanding FATA

Chief Minister Ameer Haider Khan Hoti has once again made it clear on the
world that the Pakhtun nation was not a terrorist nation but a sheer victim of
terrorism and devoted to religion.

“The issue of Fata is a matter of life and death for us as a totally wrong
impression is given to the word that the whole situation is created by the
people of tribal areas and they are breading militancy,” Ameer Haider Khan Hoti
said while expressing his views during a seminar on FATA at a local hotel on
Monday.

The chief minister said that the doors for talks were still opened for those
willing to recognize the writ of the state and lay down their arms.

The workshop was organized by sub-organization of Bhutto Foundation, Benazir
Democracy Institute.

Paying rich tributes to the Bhutto family, Hoti said that the sacrifices
rendered by the family of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto for elimination of
dictatorship and supremacy of democracy and the parliament were matchless. He
said it was the reason that the PPP was the largest political force of the
country and hoped that the party would guide the nation towards a right
direction to steer it out of the crises.

Referring to situation in FATA, Ameer Haider Hoti said that the issue of
militancy in Waziristan was not resolved on time which resulted into engulfing
other peaceful parts of the country.

He said that he had told the president and the prime minister that the issue
should not be considered as limited to FATA and frontier province only. “Without
peace in FATA, thinking about peace in our settled areas is unjustifiable,” he
added.

The chief minister said that the people of FATA should be taken onboard about
bringing administrative and political reforms and amendments in FCR so that the
tribesmen could be enabled to decide their fate.

He said that every change into FCR should be carried out in accordance with the
traditions and wishes of the people of FATA and they should be ensured basic
facilities of life.

The chief minister said that the whole country should support the Pakhtun
nation, who is fighting the war for survival of the entire country, adding
Pakistan and Afghanistan should jointly work to deal with the situation.

He termed the upcoming Pak-Afghan jirga a ray of hope and expressed the optimism
that it would produce positive results.

He said that bullets and guns was not the solution to the problem, adding talks
and negotiations could help resolve the issue.

He said that his government took the initiative of resolving the issue through
dialogue, but conspiracies were being hatched out to derail the processes.

He said that some forces including foreign were against the peace and it was
their collective responsibility to stop them as no one would come from abroad to
save them.

“Pakhtun nation has to awaken and united to get rid of the situation,” he said.

The chief minister said that they wanted to give representation to the tribal
people in provincial assembly because the assembly was incomplete without their
representation.

However, he said every decision should be taken with involvement of the tribal
people.

Addressing the workshop, chief of Benazir Democracy Institute and spokesman for
president Farhatullah Babar said that the militant organizations were receiving
arms and dollars for making ineffective the tribal areas and similar
conspiracies were also underway against the Pakistani government.

Later, talking to media people, Ameer Haider Khan Hoti said that he discussed
poverty, ROZs and development related matters with Richard Boucher during their
meeting.

He said that the government was still intact to its three-prong policy and was
ready to enter dialogue with those ready to surrender.

He said that operation in Swat district would continue till achieving its
objectives and it would be stopped within one hour of peace restoration.