5 girls schools set ablaze in Swat -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

5 girls schools set ablaze in Swat

SWAT – Unknown militants set on fire five girls’ schools in different places of Matta, sub-division of Swat, in early hours of Wednesday. However, no loss of life was reported.

The girls’ school at village Chuparyal near the grave of spiritual figure Mian Shah Jee Baba was set on fire by unknown persons on the night between Tuesday and Wednesday. Similarly, another girls’ school at Karamar in the same region was set on fire by the unknown militants.

Another school near the residence of District Nazim Swat in village Joora was also destroyed. In Sinjar village, a school was destroyed. Similar are the reports about the Girls’ High School in village Bar Shoor and Girls’ Primary School in Lower Shoor.

All these schools were destroyed during nighttime; therefore, no loss of life was reported.

It may be mentioned here that more than 70 girls’ schools in different parts of Matta Swat region have been destroyed by the alleged militants since November last.

Meanwhile, three personnel of security forces were injured when some unknown militants attacked a security forces check post in Shahdheri area near Dewlai. The security forces also went for retaliatory action but reports regarding casualties couldn’t be ascertained.

AFP adds: Local Taliban seized a government-run girls school and re-named it after Jamia Hafsa destroyed in a bloody siege in Islamabad last year, residents and officials said Wednesday. The hardliners hoisted their flag atop the school in Pusht, a town in Bajaur tribal district, and named it Jamia Hafsa, they said.

“We are trying to convince them through local elders to vacate the building,” local administration official Iqbal Khan said.

Residents said armed men led by local Taliban leader Qari Naimatullah forcibly took control of the school on Tuesday and warned that other female schools in the area would be seized to be used for religious education. “We want to convert it into a madrassa, because the Western system of education is not good for girls,” Naimatullah’s spokesman Ghulam Waheed told AFP.

“We have named it as Jamia Hafsa to avenge the attack on the Lal Masjid’s madrassa which was razed to the ground during an army operation last year,” he said.

He criticised the previous government for not rebuilding the large seminary for female students run by the Lal Masjid.

“We will take over other schools also and name them after Jamia Hafsa,” he said.
Source: The Nation
Date:6/26/2008