Pakistan PM determined to set up anti-terror tribunals

KONFRONTASI-Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif says he will not back down from a decision to establish special military tribunals to prosecute terrorism cases.

Chairing a high-level meeting at the Prime Minister’s House on Tuesday, Sharif said special courts are part of the national action plan to counter terrorism in the country.

"Special courts are part of the national action plan and are meant to provide an extraordinary solution for an extraordinary problem. All institutions would have to carefully scrutinize cases to be sent for prosecution in the special military tribunals," said the premier during the six-hour meeting.

“Our fight is with the forces of hatred, violence and intolerance. We cannot betray our martyrs by giving a picture of disunity and we shall win this fight as a nation,” Sharif said, adding, “We have isolated terrorists with our unity and will make sure that we remain united against those who killed the innocent children.”

On December 16, a group of pro-Taliban militants stormed an army-run school in the city of Peshawar and killed 149 people, including 132 students. Some 120 students were also injured in the raid.

Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militants claimed responsibility for the assault, saying it was carried out in retaliation for the Pakistani army’s major military offensive in North Waziristan tribal area, which borders Afghanistan.

The Pakistani army, known for its support for the Taliban, launched an operation against militant hideouts in North Waziristan in June after a deadly raid on Karachi Airport ended the government’s faltering peace talks with pro-Taliban militants.[mr/ptv]