by Raja Zafar Ali Khan (Ghizar)
THE news item, ‘Pakistan needs to attack militants: US diplomat’ (Oct 24). The newsagency, AFP, quoted a US diplomat as saying: “Pakistan must attack militants in its northern areas and tackle extremists threatening its stability and complicating international efforts in Afghanistan.” One is appalled to note that our media and journalists have scant knowledge of the geography of their country, as does the US diplomat. The news item carried the words ‘northern areas’.
The Northern Areas of Pakistan is the northernmost part of Pakistan and poles apart from the tribal areas. The tribal areas, the scene of the current turmoil and US bombing raids, are situated in the extreme northwest of the country, bordering southwestern Afghanistan, while the Northern Areas, comprising the districts of Diamar, Gilgit, Astor, Ghizar, Ghanche and Skardu (Baltistan), lie in the extreme northeast of the country, bordering China to the north-northeast and India’s Ladakh province to the east, as also India-held Kashmir.