TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Pakistani Taliban announces 1-month cease-fire

REUTERS
A paramilitary soldier stands guard near the building where relatives and officials are attending the funeral prayer of security officials, who were killed in a bomb attack, at an administration office in Jamrud about 25 km (15 miles) west of Peshawar March 1, 2014. Militants killed 12 members of the security escort for a polio vaccination team in northwest Pakistan on Saturday, detonating a roadside bomb before opening fire on their convoy, according to officials. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz (PAKISTAN - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST CRIME LAW MILITARY HEALTH)

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Saturday, March 1, 2014, 7:00 p.m.
 

PESHAWAR, Pakistan — The Pakistani Taliban announced Saturday that the group will observe a one-month cease-fire as part of efforts to negotiate a peace deal with the government, throwing new life into a foundering peace process.

Spokesman Shahidullah Shahid said in a statement emailed to reporters that the top leadership of the militant group has instructed all of its units to comply with the cease-fire.

The leader of the government's negotiating team, Irfan Sadiqui, praised the cease-fire announcement while speaking on Pakistan's Geo Television, saying the government will review any written document from the Taliban about it.

“Today, we are seeing a big breakthrough,” Sadiqui said.

In recent weeks, Pakistani jets and helicopters have been striking militant hideouts in the northwest, after previous efforts at negotiations broke down when a militant faction announced it had killed 23 Pakistani troops.

The Pakistani Taliban has been trying to overthrow the government and establish its own hard-line form of Islam across Pakistan for years. Tens of thousands of people have died in militant attacks.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has long promoted negotiations over military operations as a way to end the ongoing crisis. His efforts gained speed this year when both sides announced negotiating teams held initial meetings. But negotiations fell apart after the deaths of the 23 Pakistani troops, and Sharif has been under pressure to retaliate for any Taliban violence.

Critics of the peace process say militants have used previous negotiations to simply regroup.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read World

  1. Israel, Hamas accept Gaza war cease-fire
  2. Israeli airstrike kills 3 senior Hamas leaders
  3. Gaza militants kill 18 alleged spies for Israel
  4. Witnesses recount secret July raid to free journalist at ISIS base in Syria
  5. Israeli missiles take down tall building in Gaza
  6. Police, government blamed in U.K. child sex exploitation
  7. Iceland volcano shaken below, but doesn’t stir above
  8. U.S., China to meet, just days after interception of Navy patrol plane
  9. Coast Guard fires in defense on Iran boat
  10. Colombia drug lord’s most loyal assassin courts Hollywood upon early release from prison
  11. ‘Holocaust T-shirt’ for kids discontinued in Spain
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.