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Won’t Be Deterred By Terror Allegations, Says Mohsin Dawar After Release

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MNA Mohsin Dawar and Ali Wazir were released from jail on Saturday, and Dawar took to Twitter to publicly affirm his commitment to ‘lay our lives for our people’, acknowledging that it’s ‘a long struggle’ against ‘state oppression’, but one that will be countered with the same ‘zeal and enthusiasm’.

Dawar and Wazir were arrested in June under various charges including murder, attempted murder and terrorism after an encounter between the Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM) and the Army near the Kharqamar check post in North Waziristan, which resulted in multiple deaths and injuries. PTM is an essentially non-violent rights-based movement against extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, and militarization of tribal areas.

Dawar addresses the violent response to the peaceful protest, claiming that ‘The most hurtful in all of this was the allegation of violence against us preachers of non-violence.’ He further pointed out that ‘Pakistan’s biggest weakness is the silence of its good people. This status quo will end only when enough good people speak up.’

There’s an ever-present desire to work for a Pakistan in which the Pashtuns are treated as equal citizens- ‘to win peace and equal rights for our people’- using a peaceful and firm approach.

Providing valuable details into the arrest and the consequent isolation, Dawar stated that they were kept at Peshawar jail from May to September and then shifted to Haripur, where they were kept in ‘cells marked for terrorists’, claiming that there was ‘no mobility in jail, we had no access to news & other facilities’.

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Despite these hardships, Dawar stated that ‘jail was a very small price’ and especially thanked Bilawal Bhutto Zardari for ‘his unwavering support both in & out of parliament’. He acknowledged and appreciated the efforts of people fighting for their release, and ensuring that their arrests weren’t forgotten.

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