Jamia Hafsa Update

Negotiations look like they are nearing an end with the radical shariat clerics of Jamia Hafsa, and it looks like some middle ground has actually been found. The madrassah and it’s leaders would still be stubborn without the public outcry and demonstrations against them, and the fact that they are losing students now in droves.

Update: One step forward, two back…

From Dawn:

ISLAMABAD, April 22: Lal Masjid clerics on Sunday said contentious issues between them and the government had not been settled, adding that the standoff would continue till the enforcement of Sharia in the country.

“It has been reported wrongly in the media that the issues between the Lal Masjid administration and the government have been settled and the two sides are close to an agreement,” deputy in-charge of the mosque and Jamia Hafsa Maulana Abdul Rashid Ghazi told Dawn.

He said it had also been wrongly attributed to Pakistan Muslim League president Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain that girl students of Jamia Hafsa had agreed to end occupation of the children’s library, provided the seven mosques demolished by the Capital Development Authority were reconstructed. “We did not give any such assurance to Chaudhry Shujaat and, therefore, we will not evacuate the library unless Sharia is enforced in the country,” he said.

Maulana Ghazi said the mosque administration had given two demands to the government – reconstruction of the demolished mosques and enforcement of Sharia. “We want rebuilding of the razed mosques as a goodwill gesture from the government to initiate dialogue on enforcement of Islamic system.”

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