As part of a ceasefire deal negotiated between the government and the Tehreek-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in Swat Valley, Pakistani officials say that sharia will be imposed in Malakand, which constitutes a large portion of the nation’s Northwest Frontier Province.
The deal is expected to be formally announced sometime tomorrow, but provincial officials say they have already been in talks with the TTP on ways to enforce their particularly harsh form of religious law on the populace at large. The move comes as the All Parties Conference in the division officially demanded that the government impose sharia on all of Malakand. Thousands of Malakand civilians rallied, blocking the primary road through Malakand and demanding sharia as well.
While the move seems to have been embraced by many of the tribes in the area, it has sparked serious concerns in the rest of the nation about the government’s ability to tackle the growing influence of the TTP. One policy analyst referred to it as “definitely a surrender,” while retired judge Javed Iqbal warned that it would lead to the disintegration of the country.