Topic: Pir Samiullah
Al-Qaeda-linked militants are stepping up their attacks on Sufi shrines, possibly as part of an effort to impose a more fundamentalist Islamic practice on the country.
The ranks of lashkars have grown to 8,000, according to local leaders, since the Army retook the valley in June. Some residents worry about militarizing the population.
The Army launched fresh operations this week, following mounting pressure to retake the onetime tourist idyll now controlled by ultraconservative militants.