LANDMINES: The terrorizing aftermath of the war on terror [VIDEO]
The untold stories.
Life changed drastically for 14-year-old Hamida Bibi in 2014 when she lost one of her legs in a landmine blast. A child who was carefree and loved roaming around in the meadows, she now finds her mobility a big challenge.
Hamida Bibi belongs to Kot Kai, South Waziristan, once a no-go area because of militants, after which an operation was launched. However, now that the military operation is over, and slowly residents have come back to their homes, peppered all around the fields, are landmines that have still not been removed.
Hamida was busy grazing her goats in a pasture when she stepped on something. “It all happened within a few seconds. All I remember seeing were clouds of black smoke rising in the sky. The next thing I knew, I was lying in a hospital without a leg,” she said.
“I was alone. I could not see the bomb buried in the ground when my foot hit it. There was a loud explosion, and I saw the smoke. It was only afterward that I realized I was badly injured.”
She added, “We are poor people, with my father being the sole breadwinner. I used to help my father by taking care of the goats so he could do other work.”
Hamida Bibi has been disgruntled by the government’s extremely slow-paced response to the crisis and calls out their inefficiency regarding the rehabilitation of mine-blast victims.
“My father had to sell his cattle for my treatment. I used to go to school, but since I lost my leg, I was unable to continue my education. The government should compensate us just like they compensate the other victims of terrorism,” Hamida stated.
Much like Hamida, 18-year-old Taj Mohammad, a resident of Kotkai, also lost his leg in a landmine explosion while grazing his goats in a nearby pasture.
Many people, including women and children, have been killed in landmine blasts in South Waziristan.
Earlier this month, three children were killed in a blast in the Tangi Badinzai area of Ladha.
Tribal elders from across the lines have also been demanding an immediate resolution to the landmine crisis.
The United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund has also expressed deep concern over the repeated incidents of landmine blasts in different areas of Pakistan. The statement came as a direct response to the recent tragedy involving three innocent children in the Ladha South Waziristan area on the 1st of June, 2021.
Published in voicepk.net
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