Pakistan tribesmen vow to expel foreign militants
PAKISTAN: Thousands of Pakistani tribesmen vowed to expel
foreign al Qaeda-linked militants from their lands on the Afghan border
on Monday and to punish any tribesmen helping the foreigners.
Fighting broke out between the foreign militants, most of them
believed to be Uzbeks, and Pashtun tribal fighters last month in the
South Waziristan region after the militants tried to kill a
pro-government tribal leader.
Members of all nine clans of the Wazir tribe, many of whom support
the predominantly Pashtun Taliban in Afghanistan, met in the region's
main town, Wana, and pledged to fight the foreigners. The Waziris are
the main tribe in the region.
"They were our guests but later they turned into our enemies as they
started killing our people," a witness cited tribal leader Mohammad
Sharif as telling the 4,000 tribesmen. "We will not tolerate them
anymore. We'll fight until they are ousted from our land," Sharif was
quoted as saying.
The tribesmen also said any tribesmen found sheltering foreigners
would have their houses demolished, and would be expelled from the
region, witnesses said.
Tank, Tuesday, Reuters.