The detention of a miscreant with a huge cache of weapons and ammunition from a remote jungle in Khagrachhari by the army has left us with a sense of foreboding. It is the second time in two months that weapons and ammunition have been recovered in the region. In this particular operation, the haul included machine guns, sub-machine guns, SLRs, a grenade, 350 rounds of bullets and seven sets of military uniforms. This is indeed a serious breach of security, one that we must make all out efforts to address. The influx of these illegal weapons and ammunition has the prospect of causing severe infringement of peace and security in the area.
We condemn these terrorist activities which must be dealt with immediately. However, we must also point out to the grievances of the Hill Tracts people as a result of part of the 1996 Peace Accord remaining unimplemented. Initiated by the then Awami League government, it was considered a milestone achievement for which the present Prime Minister, who also headed the government at the time, received justifiable praise.
We had hoped that with the historic Accord, peace would be restored to the CHT permanently. Unfortunately, this has not happened, allowing a vested quarter to take advantage of the situation, thus attempting to destabilise the region.
Just as we must take the severest measures against terrorists, so also the conditions of the Peace Accord need to be fulfilled and its spirit not compromised.