Amnesty: Parts of Pakistan are lawless

Dec. 14, 2012 at 1:37 PM
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LONDON, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- Pakistanis in the northwest tribal areas risk isolation in a lawless zone unless the government intervenes, Amnesty International said.

In October, a 16-year old boy told the BBC he escaped from captivity after being abducted by the Taliban near the Bajaur Agency, a part of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas along Pakistan's northwest border with Afghanistan.

The Taliban, the BBC reported, said they had kidnapped boys from a local tribe because the tribe supported the government.

Amnesty International, in a 68-page report, said "thousands" of men and boys were detained without caused in the tribal areas. Some of them were tortured and some were disappeared. The organization said the Taliban were responsible for some of the most widespread abuses in the area.

"The Taliban continues to commit abuses, killing scores of civilians accused of 'spying,' launching suicide attacks in mosques, schools and other public places and executing captured soldiers," the organization said.

The organization said authorities in the region are operating with impunity, creating a legal vacuum where Pakistan's constitution is void. State and non-state actors, like the Taliban, are operating freely in the region's lawlessness.

"Without urgent action by the Pakistan government to guarantee respect for human rights, millions will remain locked in perpetual lawlessness in the tribal areas," the rights group said.

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