Pakistan (MNN) — The Pakistani Taliban, known as the TTP, have increased their presence in the Swat region.
Swat has been called the Switzerland of Pakistan due to its snow-capped mountains. The area was once a Taliban stronghold until extensive military operations removed them.
Now, armed men can once again be seen roaming the streets. Nehemiah with FMI says, “A video of a young Pakistani army major allegedly being held hostage has been shared multiple times on social media. The official can be seen sitting on the ground with his hands tied behind his back while he is being interrogated. A soldier and a Deputy Superintendent of Police [can be seen] lying on the ground.”
“The sad part of the story is the Pakistani government and military is quiet. We haven’t seen any official statement.”
People in the region now live in fear, especially Christian and other minorities.
Nehemiah asks readers to pray for FMI partners working in Swat. “They are living in the fear of death. Their lives are on the line. But we praise God for their steadfastness. In Swat, FMI has massive on-ground safe houses and ministry partnerships.”
Ask God to bring peace and healing to Swat and the surrounding areas.
The TTP has a dark history within Pakistan, Nehemiah says. “Their policy is no mercy. They kill in every corner of Pakistan; executions, suicide bombings inside churches, mosques, shrines, bazaars, malls, you name it. In schools, they killed more than 150 students and teachers. Although they are banned, we can see their movement in Pakistan is common.”
Their goal? Promoting and enforcing strict religious law throughout the country.
The header photo shows a vista from the mountains in Swat. (Photo courtesy of Designer429, CC BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons)