» 04/06/2009, 00.00
Whipping 17-yr girl a “barbaric act”, anger against Taliban mounts
Protests and demonstrations against Islamic fundamentalist madness are organised in many Pakistani cities. Supreme Court starts hearing to determine who is responsible for whipping the young woman, who refuses to testify fearing retaliations. Extremists reject accusation, claiming the video is a “fake”
Only Sharia in Swat Valley, then all of Pakistan, says Taliban leader
Sufi Muhammad says there is “no room for democracy” in Islam, a Western “system of infidels.” Taliban kill a couple accused of adultery. Activists and political leaders accuse the government of handing over the valley to extremists. Afghanistan is concerned of “dire consequences” for the whole region.
Sharia courts begin work in Swat Valley with restrictions on women
Women cannot go out unaccompanied or speak in public but must cover their heads. Girls’ schools could be closed for good. Local Catholics and Protestants fear for their future; some are starting to leave the region. Taliban militia leader threatens new judges; anyone not applying Sharia correctly will be removed from office immediately.
Swat Valley: Catholics pray for peace as the country faces an exodus of Biblical proportions
Unanimously Christians, Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs condemn Taliban violence. In Faisalabad bishop leads a prayer vigil for peace. The number of refugees could reach 1.5 million. Some 60 Christian families find refuge in Peshawar.
Government strikes a deal with Taliban, Sharia to be enforced in the northern part of the country
Under a 15-point agreement the Swat Valley should come under the administrative and legal control of Islamic militias. For the United States and NATO it is a great favour for al-Qaeda. Various Pakistani analysts are sceptical about the deal, which they see as a way to carve up the country.
Swat Valley: President Zardari authorises Islamic law, Taliban rejoice
Fundamentalists threaten to kill lawmakers for “apostasy” who voted against proposal. Catholic activist slams the presidential signature, expressing appreciation for the courage of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, the only political party that did not vote for the pro-Sharia resolution.
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