The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government on Monday announced a bounty worth Rs10 million rupees (US$100,000) for information leading to the arrest or death of the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) chief, Mullah Fazlullah, officials said.
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“The provincial government has set a bounty of Rs10 million for any information/help that can lead to the arrest or killing of TTP chief Mullah Fazlullah,” a senior official in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government told AFP, requesting anonymity. He said that the KP government had prepared a list of 615 high profile militants and was offering a combined bounty of Rs760 million (US$7.5 million).
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The official said the list also includes Mangal Bagh, chief of Lashkar-i-Islam, a Taliban-linked militant group operating in the Khyber tribal district. Mushtaq Ghani, the provincial information minister confirmed the bounty. Meanwhile, the country’s parliament deferred voting on legislation regarding the establishment of military courts for terror-related cases until Tuesday, after the chief of a religious party objected to the contents of the national plan of action.
The bill will be presented in parliament on Tuesday for voting, after which military courts will be made legal. At present the military courts deal only with cases related to the military. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had announced the establishment of military courts for terror-related cases after a deadly Taliban attack on military-run school in Peshawar that killed more than 148 people, 134 of them children. The prime minister also ended the country’s six-year-old moratorium on the death penalty in terror cases last month in the wake of the slaughter at the school.
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Seven convicted militants have been hanged since the de facto ban on capital punishment ended. Six of those executed were found guilty of trying to assassinate the then-military dictator Musharraf in Rawalpindi in 2003 and the seventh was sentenced in connection with a 2009 attack on the army headquarters. Officials have said they plan to hang 500 convicts in the coming weeks, drawing condemnation from international human rights campaigners.