Buner falls to Taliban (is it the next Swat?)

Discussion in 'International Politics' started by Daredevil, Apr 22, 2009.

  1. nitesh

    nitesh Mob Control Manager Stars and Ambassadors

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    I was saying this Talibunny problem is actually the class divide:

    Daily Times - Leading News Resource of Pakistan

    Taliban pose as ‘Robin Hoods’

    * CNN says there is widespread hope in Pakistan that adopting a code of law based on holy Quran will transform society

    Daily Times Monitor

    LAHORE: The Taliban have been promoting themselves as Islamic Robin Hoods, defending the rural poor from the corrupt and oppressive ruling elite, :2guns:the CNN said on Sunday.

    Their message has resonated in the countryside where the culture is deeply conservative and the people desperately poor.

    In farmlands just 24 kilometres from Islamabad, Mohammed Daoud – whose family of seven survive on Rs 4,000 a month he and his 15-year old son earn by selling buffalo milk – told CNN, “Justice is only for people who have money. We are illiterate, but we are hoping that with sharia law, our lives will get better.”

    Two months ago, Daoud said, the government had bulldozed his family’s house, because they were illegally squatting on property they did not own.

    Hope: There is widespread hope, the broadcaster noted, that adopting a code of law based on the holy Quran will transform a society where corruption is rampant and where at least a quarter of the population live below the poverty line.

    “It’s systematic,” said Amnesty International’s Sam Zarifi, “the Taliban move into an area, they use local existing resentments. They often go in with the guise of being Robin Hoods. They scare away local thieves, they impose very, very quick justice, very harsh justice, and initially in some places they are even welcomed.”


    “Every part of the country should have sharia, like in Saudi Arabia,” an Islamabad farmer told CNN. “Then poor and rich people will be equal.”

    {Is there is no rich poor divide is Saudi? These guys live in d illusion}

    “We love the Taliban,” announced one Pashtun farmer.

    Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf chief Imran Khan summed up his response to the Taliban by saying, “The poorer section of society is joining them... this is now developing into a battle between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have-nots’.”

    “What the Taliban are giving them is cheap – in fact, free – accessible justice at the village level,” he added. “This is what Pakistan should be doing for its own people.”

    But other Taliban supporters also want to take away many freedoms from women.

    “Women should not even come out of their houses. That’s against Islam,” said one.
     
  2. Rage

    Rage DFI TEAM Stars and Ambassadors

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    Are the Talibunnies outwitting the Pakistani Army? Feigned strategic withdrawal at it's best:

    ---

    Taliban still in Buner despite deal to withdraw



    Islamabad, Apr 26 : Some heavily armed Taliban militants who entered the strategic Buner district near the Pakistani capital from Swat valley are still in the area despite a deal with local authorities for their withdrawal, a media report said today.

    About 10 per cent of the hundreds of Taliban who came to Buner from Swat are still present in the area while the local Taliban from the district are patrolling some parts of the district, Geo News channel quoted its sources as saying today.

    Taliban spokesman Muslim Khan had yesterday claimed that all the militants from Swat had withdrawn from Buner, located 100 km from Islamabad. He also said the local Taliban of Buner would remain in the area.

    Taliban fighters began pulling out of Buner yesterday after the Pakistan Army began preparing for possible operations against them. Army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani warned that his force would root out terrorism and not allow militants to dictate terms to the government.

    Meanwhile, security forces today arrested two persons and seized 475 kg of explosives and 450 fuses from them in Swabi district, which is located near Buner.



    Taliban still in Buner despite deal to withdraw :: Samay Live


    x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x


    Major military offensive launched in Buner



    By Iftikhar A. Khan
    Tuesday, 28 Apr, 2009 | 06:42 PM PST |


    ISLAMABAD: Security forces on Tuesday launched a major operation in Buner against militants after intelligence agencies intercepted telephonic conversation of Swat Taliban Chief Maulana Fazlullah with other commanders revealing their plans of taking over the area by staging a symbolic withdrawal.

    'Though the operation is being led by Inspector General Frontier Corps (FC), troops from Pakistan Army and fighter jets from Pakistan Air Force (PAF) are backing it,' Director General Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Athar Abbas told reporters at a press briefing.

    He said the operation in Dir had been completed with the killing of around seventy militants and flushing others out of the area. He said there were some pockets of resistance but will be cleared soon.

    Abbas said the militants had entered in Buner on April 2-3 and were involved in kidnapping , killing of policemen and forceful recruitment of youth for training in Swat. They had also started building bunkers in the mountains of Buner and were terrorizing and intimidating the local population without any justification.

    He said "Government exercised restraint and demonstrated patience and the militants were warned to leave the area before no option except launch of a full fledged operation was left". [Self-Interjection: What a load of kack!]

    He said the operation was launched at about 4 pm and hoped that it would be completed within the week.

    The formal announcement about the operation came an hour after Interior Minister Rehman A Malik said around 450 militants had been spotted in Buner and warned them to leave the area.


    'I warn Baitullah Mehsud that enough is enough,' he said while speaking to reporters at the parliament house. He ruled out the possibility of Taliban reaching the Margalla hills.

    The intercepted telephonic conversation of Maulana Fazlullah, which was also played for reporters, showed that the militants had no plan to move out of Buner and were gearing up for a showdown with the security forces using mines, rockets and other weaponry.

    Answering a question, Abbas said the terrorists cannot pose a threat to the Capital. 'Distance is not the only component to measure the level of threat, but counter-capacity has to be kept in mind,' he remarked.

    He termed statements expressing concern over the threats of Taliban marching toward Islamabad as a false alarm and said the security forces had a great capacity to eliminate miscreants.

    He said the security forces have started from various positions and will move forward. He said attack helicopters will facilitate the movement on ground, but refused to give any more details including the number of personnel taking part in the operation saying that operational details may benefit the other side.

    Meanwhile, Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani called on President Asif Ali Zardari on Tuesday. The operation in Buner, situation in Swat and adjoining areas and other important issues concerning national security are believed to have been discussed during the meeting.



    DAWN.COM | NWFP | Major military offensive launched in Buner


    x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x


    Taliban still occupying parts of Buner: FC



    Monday, 27 Apr, 2009 | 01:51 PM PST |

    [​IMG]
    The District Police Officer of Buner said a number of foreign and local Taliban
    militants were still present in the area despite claims by the militants
    that they had withdrawn.—AP


    PESHAWAR: Taliban militants have refused to leave Buner completely and are coercing the local population to support them.

    The Frontier Corps (FC) Commandant says the Taliban occupy at least 10 to 15 per cent of Buner.

    Citing intelligence reports, senior security officials have said the Taliban coerced local tribal elders in Buner to announce support for the outlawed Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).

    Security officials told DawnNews that even though not displaying weapons, militants were present during a meeting of the local council of elders on Sunday to announce conditional support for the TTP.

    Earlier, the District Police Officer of Buner also said a number of foreign and local Taliban militants were still present in the area despite claims by the local militant leadership that they were withdrawing from Buner.

    Officials say the Taliban had moved into Buner from Swat, and they continue to take violent action against the people in at least two villages who had initially formed an armed lashkar to resist their advances.



    DAWN.COM | NWFP | Taliban still occupying parts of Buner: FC
     
  3. Sailor

    Sailor Regular Member

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    Hmmm, funny that this is happening a day after the announcement of the hundreds of millions of dollars from the United States. Could palms have been greased at high level?
    Is that why there has been silence from the PA for two weeks whilst they waited for US payola?
     
  4. Rage

    Rage DFI TEAM Stars and Ambassadors

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    Breaking: 71 officials taken hostage in Buner


    Wednesday, April 29, 2009

    [​IMG]


    By Javed Aziz Khan

    PESHAWAR: Armed militants in Pir Baba area of Buner district took hostage, at least, 71 security officials after inviting them to talks in a local mosque near the famous shrine, a source from the troubled district told The News.

    It was learnt that those who were made hostage included the station house officer (SHO) of the Pir Baba police station, his 20 cops and around 50 personnel of the paramilitary Frontier Constabulary (FC).

    The sources said that the militants had invited the SHO and other cops to the mosque for talks at around 7:00 pm. They were later made hostage and armed militants were directed not to let any of them go outside. It may be mentioned here that the FC is at the disposal of the local police in Buner as is the case in several other troubled areas.




    71 officials taken hostage in Buner
    The News International - No. 1 English Newspaper from Pakistan
    Pakistan Papers | Headlines
     
  5. nitesh

    nitesh Mob Control Manager Stars and Ambassadors

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    Daily Times - Leading News Resource of Pakistan
     
  6. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Militants set up base camp in Kala Dhaka

    MANSEHRA: Militants have infiltrated into Kala Dhaka, the tribal belt of Mansehra, from Buner and established a base camp in the area, official sources told Dawn on Tuesday.



    They said over 100 militants of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan had entered the provincially administered tribal area of Kala Dhaka from the neighbouring Buner district and had established a camp in its Loniyian area.



    Loniyian, according to the sources, once used to be a training camp of militants that was closed after the government launched a crackdown on such camps.



    The official sources claimed that the camp had again been made functional where new recruits were being trained. The information, however, could not be confirmed from independent sources.



    Last week, the local political administration had terminated the services of four Levies constables who had left the Loniyian checkpost vacant. Sources said these Levies men had been threatened by militants to close the post and leave the site.



    The infiltration of militants into the area has worried tribesmen of Loniyian, Chemaser, Dari Kaka Khail, Mungri and other areas and they held a jirga the other day, which was also attended by Moman Khan, the alleged mastermind of the attacks on some NGOs following the Lal Masjid operation.



    The elders had asked Moman Khan to leave the area along with his comrades to their respective areas, otherwise tribesmen would take up arms against them. ‘We will not allow anybody to use our soil for their militant and sabotage activities at any cost,’ the elders had said.



    The sources said Moman Khan had told the jirga he was not involved in any militant activity in the region and had left the Lashkar-i-Jhangvi. ‘If the jirga finds my involvement in any outlawed activity, it should not expel me but kill me and I won’t resist,’ Moman Khan had told the jirga.



    The jirga members had also met the political administrator of Kaka Dhaka in Oghi and apprised him about the development.



    The sources said the presence of militants and the killing of a couple on the decree of a jirga in Kala Dhaka had cost Mansehra DCO Israr Khan the job as political agent as his services were withdrawn and he was asked by the provincial government to report to the establishment division.



    Mr Israr had dispatched a report about the presence of militants in Kala Dhaka to the provincial home department, which was quite difference from the reports sent by other law-enforcement agencies as he had ruled out the presence of the training camp in Kala Dhaka but said there were 20 to 25 militants in the area.



    Kala Dhaka is considered an important route to the strategic Karakoram Highway and other parts of the country as it shares boundary with the restive areas. The area is run only by 100 untrained Levis personnel and its officers are located in Oghi, a tehsil of the Mansehra district.


    All the matters relating to Kala Dhaka are settled through jirga and the political administration has no role to stop carrying out its decisions as was witnessed last week when a couple was killed on the jirga’s order.



    Law-enforcement agencies have held the Kala Dhaka militants responsible for sending threatening letters to NGOs in Battagram, which led to suspending of activities by almost all the NGOs in the district three days ago.



    According to a source, the mountainous area of Chatter Plane in the Mansehra district could be the potential abode of the Taliban.


    DAWN.COM | Pakistan | Militants set up base camp in Kala Dhaka
     
  7. Pintu

    Pintu New Member

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    The Times of India reports that Pakistan Army seized Daggar town in Buner.

    The link and the report from The Times of India follows:

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...-of-key-town-in-Buner/articleshow/4462598.cms

    Pakistan troops seize control of key town in Buner
    29 Apr 2009, 1158 hrs IST, AGENCIES


    BUNER: Pakistani troops took the main town in a key northwestern valley after being dropped by helicopters behind Taliban lines, a military
    spokesman said on the second day of an offensive on Wednesday. ( Watch )

    The spokesman said troops had secured Daggar town in Buner valley and linked up with police and officers from the Frontier Constabulary militia.

    The Taliban's entry into a region just 100 km (60 miles) northwest of Islamabad earlier this month had sent shivers through Pakistan
    and sparked alarm in the United States.

    Pakistan is acting under intense US pressure to take a tougher line against Islamist militants expanding from strongholds along the Afghan border, where al-Qaida leaders including Osama bin Laden may also be hiding.

    In recent days, government forces have begun trying to drive the Taliban back into the Swat Valley, from where they had pushed out under cover of a creaking peace pact struck in February.

    Helicopters dropped troops near Daggar, the main town in the Buner district, and in neighbouring areas early on Wednesday morning, an army statement said.

    The commandos secured the town and were linking up with police and paramilitary troops already in the area, the statement said.

    It didn't say how many troops were involved or whether they clashed with militants who overran the district earlier this month.
     
  8. Pintu

    Pintu New Member

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    Report from The Associated Press which says about the war in the Bunner region.

    Link and the report from The Associated Press follows:

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hkiMxbHNH0BqgpWA2ZG6VD6wVTmAD97SSRM80


    Pakistan army: Taliban holding town hostage

    By MUNIR AHMAD – 29 minutes ago

    ISLAMABAD (AP) — Soldiers sent to halt a Taliban advance toward the Pakistani capital fought their way over a mountain pass Thursday, killed at least 14 militants and narrowly escaped a wave of suicide car bombers, the army said.

    As troops pursued an offensive praised by the United States, a burst of shootings in a southern city left dozens dead and added the specter of ethnic conflict to the Islamist violence gnawing at the nuclear-armed country's stability.

    President Asif Ali Zardari urged ordinary Pakistanis to support the operation in the Buner region so the Islamic nation would remain under "a moderate, modern and democratic state."

    But there was anger and skepticism among hundreds of residents fleeing Buner on Thursday to join more than half a million others displaced by fighting that has flared across the northwest over the past year.

    "Both sides bring us trouble: The Taliban is shelling, the army is shelling," said Taj Mohammed, a 43-year-old farmer driving a pickup truck carrying more than a dozen relatives. "Why are they putting our women and children in danger? We want peace, whether it comes through the government or the Taliban."

    Security forces backed by artillery and warplanes began pushing into Buner, a district just 60 miles (100 kilometers) from Islamabad, on Tuesday after Taliban militants from the neighboring Swat Valley infiltrated the area under cover of a peace pact.

    On Thursday, troops ousted militants from the Ambela Pass leading over the mountains into Buner and were inching toward the north, army spokesman Maj. Gen. Athar Abbas said.

    Soldiers opened fire on four suspected suicide car bombers who drove toward them near the pass, Abbas said. Two vehicles exploded while the other two managed to drive away. No troops were hurt, he said.

    Troops also destroyed four militant vehicles in Dir, a district to the west, Abbas said. In all, at least 14 militants were killed and one soldier was wounded in the previous 24 hours, he said.

    Abbas also said militants, who have kidnapped dozens of lightly armed police and paramilitary troops, burned a police station farther north and sealed off the town of Sultanwas.

    "The people of Sultanwas are in great distress," Abbas said at a news conference. "Nobody is being allowed to move out of Sultanwas."

    He also said militants killed a police officer and threw his body into a river in Swat, but said the peace deal centered on the valley remained "intact."

    A spokesman for the Taliban in Swat insisted they were sticking to the peace process. The militants in Buner were all local Taliban, Muslim Khan said.

    "They are our friends and they have not suffered any big losses so far," Khan said.

    Security forces barred some reporters from entering Buner and telephone connections were cut, making it hard to gain firsthand accounts of the fighting.

    U.S. leaders sharply criticized Zardari's decision to sign a law imposing Islamic law in Swat and the surrounding Malakand region in an attempt to halt two years of bloody and inconclusive fighting.

    Defenders of the pact say the Islamic law concession will isolate hard-liners bent on destabilizing the country and bolster thin public support for any later crackdown.

    Officials said Thursday the Islamic courts will be up and running within days, despite the growing violence.

    The "time has come for the entire nation to give pause to their political differences and rise to the occasion and give full support to our security forces in this critical hour," Zardari said in a statement. "This is the only way to demonstrate our will to keep Pakistan as a moderate, modern and democratic state where the rights of all citizens are protected."

    Pakistan's stability is complicated by deep ethnic and sectarian tensions that are likely to grow as a result of a marked slowdown in economic growth.

    Competition for jobs and political power is sharpest in Karachi, a teeming southern port with a history of ethnic violence where shooting broke out late Wednesday.

    Much of the tension has been between the Pashtun population, who dominate the violence-plagued northwest, and Urdu-speaking Mohajirs descended from migrants from India.

    The main Mohajir political party that runs the city, the Muttahida Quami Movement, has been outspoken against the Pashtun-dominated Taliban and has warned the militants represent a growing threat in Karachi, Pakistan's 16-million strong commercial hub.

    The city was largely crippled Wednesday after two MQM activists were gunned down by unknown assailants, sparking street violence that had abated by dawn.

    Paramilitary rangers patrolled the city's trouble spots Thursday, as doctors and police said the death toll reached 34, with about 50 others wounded.

    The Obama administration, determined to stop militants from using Pakistan as a base for attacks in Afghanistan, is asking Congress for more money to aid the Pakistani army.

    In a news conference Wednesday marking his first 100 days in office, Obama said he was "gravely concerned" about Pakistan's stability, saying it was struggling to deliver even basic services such as health care and education.

    Obama expressed confidence that Pakistan's army would continue to keep its nuclear arsenal secure — though left the door open for U.S. action if necessary.

    Associated Press writers Ashraf Khan in Karachi and Lara Jakes in Washington contributed to this report.
     
  9. nitesh

    nitesh Mob Control Manager Stars and Ambassadors

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    what you guys say about this, all the news about fighting and cleaning up are farce it seems:

    DAWN.COM | Provinces | Taliban destroy FC camp, seize arms

    Taliban destroy FC camp, seize arms
    By Abdur Rehman Abid and Haleem Asad
    Friday, 01 May, 2009 | 03:45 AM PST |

    BUNER: Militants blew up a camp of the Frontier Constabulary and took away weapons, while jets and helicopters continued heavy bombing on their suspected positions :blum3:in different parts of Buner district on Thursday.

    According to sources, two FC platoons which had been besieged at the Jawar Camp on Wednesday night were allowed to leave after surrendering to the militants.

    The militants took away an APC and a large haul of weapons before destroying the camp and a checkpoint, the sources said.

    A police vehicle was also taken away and a police station was set on fire in Pir Baba town. Local people said militants had control of Ambela Chowk, Pacha, Nawagai, Jungai, Swarai, Gagera, Dewana Baba, Pir Baba and Sultanwas.

    Security forces stepped up air strikes and ground forces, backed by tanks and heavy artillery positioned in Rustam area of the Mardan district, attacked targets in Buner.

    Helicopters attacked militants in Sultanwas town where they had set up makeshift headquarters at the house of a tribal elder after forcing his family to leave.

    Planes bombed Karaker, Dermai pass, Darazai pass and Ambela. Militants have blown up two bridges near Ambela in a bid to block the movement of ground forces. Militants are reported to have planted explosive devices along the area’s main road and at other places.

    Hundreds of families, among them Afghan refugees, left their homes and headed towards Swabi and Mardan. People in Daggar, the district headquarters, were facing shortage of food and other essentials items because of curfew. Troops had arrived in the town by helicopters on Wednesday.

    Meanwhile, two children were injured in shelling by helicopters in Gul Abad as security forces continued their operation in parts of Lower Dir district. According to sources, militants were still holding positions in Gul Abad.

    No casualty among militants was reported in the attacks by helicopter gunships. Militants took away two vehicles from the hujra of MNA Malik Azmat Khan of the Pakistan People’s Party at Ouch.

    A vehicle was taken away from the Chakdara timber market, owned by the Forest Development Corporation (FDC). Militants moved in two vehicles on the Chakdara-Timergara road near Gul Abad.
     
  10. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

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    Taliban abduct 10 paramilitaries in Pakistan north


    Taliban militants kidnapped 10 Pakistani paramilitaries in an attack on their headquarters on Friday as Islamic militants fought back against an army offensive in the troubled northwest.

    More than 50 militants stormed the paramilitary headquarters in Upper Dir district of Malakand region, where the Pakistan military is battling to evict the Taliban from Buner, a strategic valley about 100 km (60 miles) from Islamabad, a senior government official said.

    Both Upper Dir and Buner are part of Malakand, though they do not share a border.

    "We are using all means to safely recover (the paramilitaries). We have engaged tribal elders for this purpose," Atif-ur-Rehman, chief administrator of Upper Dir, told Reuters.

    Pakistani forces have been battling militants through mountain passes around Buner for the past four days.

    The Taliban's entry into Buner this month from their nearby stronghold of Swat valley unnerved many Pakistanis and raised fears in Washington that the nuclear-armed nation vital to its efforts to defeat al Qaeda and stabilize Afghanistan was itself becoming unstable.

    Taliban abduct 10 paramilitaries in Pakistan north | Reuters
     
  11. F-14

    F-14 Global Defence Moderator Senior Member

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  12. Pintu

    Pintu New Member

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    BBC reports that Talks are held on Pakistan peace deal.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8028567.stm


    Talks held on Pakistan peace deal
    Pakistan soldiers in Buner district, 29 April, 2009
    The military has launched an operation against militants in Dir and Buner

    Talks have been held in north-west Pakistan in an effort to shore up a peace deal with the Taleban.

    The cleric who negotiated the deal met North West Frontier Province officials and called for an end to the current army operation against the Taleban.

    Both sides said they backed the peace deal but no agreement was concluded on a truce.

    The military said on Friday between 55 and 60 militants had been killed in fighting in the past 24 hours.

    The talks were held between the cleric Sufi Muhammad and Mian Iftikhar Hussain, the information minister of NWFP, in the town of Timergara, in Lower Dir.

    See a map of the region

    Mr Hussain said: "Everything is being done to end militancy. Everything is being done for peace."

    The meeting was described as positive, with both sides backing the peace deal. Future talks are planned but no date has been set.

    Sufi Muhammad said there could be no direct talks with the Taleban until the military operation ended.


    Civilians in Buner

    In pictures: Plight of displaced

    But the military has said it will continue its offensive to remove militants from the Lower Dir and Buner regions.

    The Pakistani government and some Western nations are concerned that the Taleban are trying to extend their influence beyond the Swat Valley, an area which they largely control already.

    The Taleban and the NWFP government this year agreed a deal that would bring Sharia law to large parts of the region in return for an end to the insurgency.

    However, the Taleban have not laid down their arms.

    Civilians flee

    On Friday military spokesman Maj-Gen Athar Abbas said: "Fifty-five to 60 militants have been killed in the fighting over the past 24 hours [in Buner]."

    The area is less than 100km (60 miles) from the capital, Islamabad.

    Tens of thousands of people have fled the fighting in Dir and Buner.

    Earlier, suspected Taleban militants abducted and then released 10 paramilitary soldiers in the Dir area.

    The paramilitary soldiers were abducted at 0200 on Friday (2200 GMT Thursday) after the insurgents surrounded their checkpoint, police said.

    There were few details of the release, though the authorities said the move followed talks with local leaders.

    They said the militants had taken a large quantity of arms and ammunition.

    Pakistan map showing Dagar
     

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