Pakistan People’s Party Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari on Friday took to Twitter to slam the government for offering to pardon Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan members provided they renounce violence and follow the Constitution.
Bilawal tweeted, “The unilateral decision to offer amnesty to terrorist groups within Pakistan is an insult to the thousands of victims of terrorism.”
The young chairperson was responding to foreign minister's comments a day earlier in which he said the government was "open to pardoning" the group provided they renounce violence.
"If those guys [TTP] come [from Afghanistan] and start creating problems for us over here, it will affect innocent lives and we don't want that," he said in the video interview, excerpts of which are posted below.
On Wednesday Pakistan's President Arif Alvi made similar comments about pardoning men not involved in criminal activities.
As Dawn cautioned in its editorial on Friday, any "amnesty should be for some individuals, not the entire outfit, as a general amnesty is a dangerous idea. For example, low-ranking cadres that may have been ‘misguided’ and agree to lay down their arms and live according to the law of the land can be considered for an amnesty."
It also called for them to enter deradicalization programs but said "even these individuals would have to be watched by the state, for there are examples from foreign countries’ deradicalisation programmes that indicate some ‘rehabilitated’ extremists often relapse into violence."
Earlier this month, TTP claimed responsibility for an attack in Mastung in which four security personnel were martyred.
The Prime Minister strongly condemned that attack in a tweet.