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State of war in Pakistan

July 03, 2007
The Pakistan government seems to have drawn first blood in its standoff with the students of the radical Lal Masjid.

One hundred students of the Lal Masjid surrendered on Wednesday before a fresh deadline set by the Pakistani government ended even as the two hardline clerics along with several other students remained holed up inside.

Lal Masjid resembled a war zone after President Pervez Musharraf had late Tuesday night ordered the deployment of army units around the mosque and the boys' madrassa located in a posh locality about 70 km from Masjid.

The surrender came as Musharraf announced a reward of Rs 5,000 for every student who surrenders besides pardoning them and giving travel facilities to all of them.

Pakistani officials said around 100 male and female students of the madrassa have surrendered.

Earlier, six girl students of the seminary came out and were taken away by their parents.

Image: A Pakistani soldier patrols a street near the Lal Masjid.
Photographs: Farooq Naeem/AFP/Getty Images

Also read: All about the Lal Masjid stand-off

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