13 killed in clashes over irrigation water in Pak tribal belt

At least 13 people were killed in a fresh gun battle between two rival groups over distribution of irrigation water in Pakistan`s restive tribal belt, taking to 50 the toll in three weeks of fighting over the issue.

Last Updated: Sep 16, 2010, 21:07 PM IST

Peshawar: At least 13 people were killed
on Thursday in a fresh gun battle between two rival groups over
distribution of irrigation water in Pakistan`s restive tribal
belt, taking to 50 the toll in three weeks of fighting over
the issue.

Armed members of Shalozan and Shalozan Tangi tribes in
Kurram clashed again today, leaving 13 people dead and seven
injured, local media reports said.

Since the clashes over the allocation of irrigation water
began three weeks ago, 50 people have died while over 70
injured.

The local political administration appears to be helpless
in controlling the situation as efforts to restore peace have
not produced any results.

Kurram tribal agency is virtually cut off from the rest
of Pakistan for the past two years due to intense clashes
between rival Shia and Sunni tribesmen.

The situation was exacerbated after Taliban infiltrated
the area and began targeting the Shias.

Tribesmen in Kurram tribal agency have been forced to use
routes passing through Afghanistan even to visit places like
Peshawar.

Local residents allege that the Governor of
Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, who functions as the agent of the
President in the semi-autonomous region, has not taken any
step to control the situation.

PTI