CHILAS (ET): Even though a temporary ceasefire has been brokered between the warring sides of Kohistan and Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B) after deadly clashes, the row is far from over.
The long-standing issue was triggered over a nearly 10-kilometre-long strip of land stretching on both sides of the Basari check post that separates Kohistan from G-B. The stretch is part of the area being demarcated for Diamer-Bhasha dam.
In a bloody escalation, at least seven people were killed and nearly a dozen wounded in shootouts between the two sides that began on February 26 after villagers from Thor Valley in G-B’s Diamer district claimed Kohistanis forcibly took away more than 400 goats grazing on the disputed land near the dam.
Though the warring tribesmen agreed on a 40-day ceasefire after they were requested by a jirga, the finality of the armistice is subject to solution of the issue within the stipulated time.“It’s good that ceasefire has been brokered,” said Bazid Khan, a resident of Chilas, Diamer Valley. “But I want to warn you things are not going to cool down so easily, especially after so many precious lives were lost,” Bazid told The Express Tribune on Sunday.
While emotions run high, residents from both the sides hold the federal government responsible for the bloodshed.