In a disturbing incident, Pakistan’s military killed two people and wounded at least 10 others in Bannu area of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. The incident took place yesterday when a clash erupted between the military personnel and the internally displaced persons (IDPs) at an IDP camp in Bannu.
Newsweek Pakistan reported that soldiers at the camp opened firing – calling it “aerial firing” – after people at the camp engaged in an angry argument with them. The soldiers called it an act of self-defense. The civilians quoted in media state that soldiers started beating a boy after an argument and when people tried to intervene, other soldiers started beating them too. Finding themselves helpless against the armed soldiers, the civilians picked stones to deter the armed men. This is what led to the military opening fire.
It is not clear how “aerial firing”, which is not directed at people, killed and injured the camp residents. Bad reporting, lies, or an unusual happening whereby bullets somehow turned on the civilians of their own will – though bullets to date are not known to have a will of their own? But then it’s Pakistan – the land of contradictions – and anything can happen there.
Interestingly, as always happens, the security personnel talking to the media remained anonymous while the civilians who gave their statements about the incident were duly named. “Talk” of military states?