Though the marauding Tehreek-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) force that seized parts of the Buner District late last week have apparently returned to the Swat Valley, the local groups set up during their brief presence continue to enforce their unique brand of religious law across the area.
After dispatching paramilitary forces to the district last week, the Pakistani government had apparently redirected their focus against the Lower Dir district along the Afghan border. Yet officials say that attack is only a prelude to a much larger attack being planned in Buner in the coming days.
The offensive seems certain to imperil the Swat Valley peace deal, which passed through the National Assembly unanimously and was signed into law less than two weeks ago, has become decidedly unpopular through much of the country.
But even if the deal survives yet another military offensive along the Swat Valley’s periphery, President Asif Ali Zardari says the government intends to review the deal based on whether or not the local residents think it was successful in bringing peace.