The Taliban says it is pulling out from a key Pakistani district close to Islamabad.
Local television pictures showed dozens of militants emerging from a high-walled villa that served as their headquarters in Buner, a valley just 100 kilometres from the capital. The Taliban moved into Buner after the government agreed to militants’ demands that Sharia law be introduced in the neighbouring Swat valley. But yesterday Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Yousaf Raza Gilani, warned he was prepared to use the army to restore the rule of law. “They (Pakistan Army) will support the provincial and the federal government and wherever action is required they will do it,” he said in an address to parliament. He also rejected US concerns that the militants posed a risk to the security of the country’s nuclear weapons. The Taliban had agreed a peace deal bringing Sharia law to some districts in return for ending their insurgency but it is unclear what offer, if any, was made to halt their latest offensive.