Pakistan imposes indefinite curfew in South Waziristan

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A local administration in Pakistan’s Wana the headquarters of the South Waziristan tribal district, and surrounding areas have imposed a curfew for an indefinite period amid a search operation for the perpetrators of an attack on government forces.

According to a report by Dawn newspaper, a public notice issued by the office of the assistant commissioner said Wana Bazaar would remain closed until the normalisation of situation in the wake of the Sunday night terrorist attack.

The residents said armed men of ‘peace committees’ had closed their offices in Wana.

“General public is requested to keep aloof from Wana Bazaar in order to ensure the safety of people and their properties,” said the notice, which was circulated late Monday night.

The administration urged the residents to cooperate with the district administration and government forces.

Two soldiers of Frontier Corps were killed and five others were injured in the improvised explosive device blast on Wana Bypass Road on Sunday night.

A vehicle of paramilitary forces was bound for the Scouts Camp from the town when the IED went off. No terrorist group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Residents according to the newspaper said all entry and exit points to the town had been blocked with razor wire after the imposition of a curfew. They said the government forces and police had begun an extensive search operation in the bazaar.

The residents of Azam Warsak near Wana demonstrated against the search of houses and curfew.

An official told Dawn that the search operation for terrorists had been extended to surrounding villages of Wana and weapons had been seized.

He said the law-enforcement agencies were carrying a house-to-house operation in villages. The official said the forces also raided a settlement of Afghan nationals in the northern parts of Wana town and recovered weapons and ammunition.

Sources said hundreds of Afghan families had been living in the area without legal cover.

They said the Bypass Road, where the vehicle hit with IED, had a large population of undocumented Afghans.

The government had closed registered and unregistered refugee camps in the erstwhile Fata in the first decade of 2000 and refugees were shifted to the settled areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

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