Pakistan conflict raises tough question: should teachers fire back? | Reuters

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CHARSADDA, Pakistan/ISLAMABAD Stuck with 15 of his students on a third building patio of a campus building as gunmen came adult a stairs, university executive Mohammad Shakil urged Pakistani military nearing during a stage to toss him adult a gun so he could fire back.

“We were stealing … though were unarmed,” Shakil told Reuters, vocalization after 4 Islamist militants pounded Bacha Khan University in Pakistan’s uneasy northwest on Wednesday, murdering some-more than 20 people.

“I was disturbed about a students, and afterwards one of a militants came after us,” Shakil added. “After steady requests, a military threw me a pistol and we dismissed some shots during a terrorists.”

As some-more sum of Wednesday’s conflict emerged, courtesy focused on during slightest dual members of staff who took adult arms to conflict enemy focussed on murdering them and their students.

Some hailed them as heroes, as a nation eaten an conflict that gimlet similarities to a massacre, in late 2014, of 134 pupils during an army-run propagandize in Peshawar, about 30 km (19 miles) from where this week’s conflict occurred.

Others questioned either teachers should be armed, as many are, given it goes opposite a ideals of a profession.

Such a quandary might have been distant from a mind of chemistry highbrow Hamid Hussain, as he sealed himself inside a room with colleagues after gunmen stormed an accommodation retard on a university campus.

When a assailants pennyless down a door, Hussain dismissed several rounds from his pistol, according to Shabir Ahmad Khan, an English dialect techer holding cover in an adjacent washroom.

“They carried on complicated sharpened and we was scheming myself for death, though afterwards they did not enter a washroom and left,” Khan recalled.

Later on in a same building, Hussain dismissed again during a militants to concede some of his students to get away, flourishing pupils told internal media. Hussain was subsequently shot and after died from his wounds.

“Kudos to highbrow Dr Hamid Hussain. Our favourite fought bravely n saved many,” Asma Shirazi, a renouned speak uncover host, pronounced on Twitter.


Others, too, have credited a actions of Hussain and Shakil with assisting to forestall a gunmen, armed with conflict rifles and palm grenades, from spilling some-more blood.

Bacha Khan University also employed around 50 of a possess guards who, witnesses said, fought for tighten to an hour to keep a gunmen removed and forestall them from entering a girl’s hostel as a military and army arrived.

Pakistan army orator General Asim Bajwa pronounced a confidence guards responded “very well” to a conflict before reinforcements reached them.

In a arise of a 2014 propagandize massacre, teachers in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, where Peshawar is located, were offering weapons training. Yet some are heedful of defending teachers and enlivening them to rivet in battle.

Gun tenure is common in Pakistan, overdue to magnanimous chartering laws, and quite so in a semi-autonomous genealogical belt nearby a Afghan limit where a hazard of belligerent conflict is high.

Jamil Chitrali, boss of a Khyber Pakhtunkhwa University Teaching Staff Association, pronounced some-more teachers were now carrying personal weapons, as confidence had worsened.

“Arms are opposite a norms of my profession,” he said. “I am training beliefs and probity in a class. How we can lift a gun?”


Four gunmen, all given killed, were concerned in Wednesday’s attack, officials said. They used a cover of thick haze to scale a campus’ back walls, before conflict tyro dormitories and classrooms and executing people during will.

Some 3,000 students were enrolled during a university, many vital on campus, while hundreds of visitors had arrived to hear a communication show to commemorate a life of internal Pashtun jingoist favourite and peacemaker Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, after whom a university is named.

The provincial supervision announced a day of anguish on Thursday as lamentation families buried their passed and survivors removed their ordeal.

Who was to censure stays a mystery. A comparison commander of a Pakistan Taliban, Umar Mansoor, on Wednesday claimed responsibility, though an central orator for a organisation after denied involvement, job a conflict “un-Islamic”.

The hardline Islamist transformation was believed to be behind a propagandize electrocute only over a year ago, and educational institutions are an increasingly common aim for militants wanting to dismay a public.

Pakistan has killed and arrested hundreds of suspected Taliban militants in a final year underneath a vital crackdown opposite a organisation fighting to overpower a supervision and implement a despotic interpretation of Islamic law.

The army pronounced on Thursday a conflict in Charsadda, nearby Peshawar, was concurrent from opposite a limit inside Afghanistan, according to a investigations.

Army arch General Raheel Sharif has called Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and a U.S. commander of general army in Afghanistan to ask their assistance in locating those it binds obliged for a assault, army orator Bajwa pronounced on Twitter.

(Editing by Mike Collett-White)

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