Wednesday, February 18

Photo of the day

Thousands of local residents hold a rally against the ongoing Pakistani military operations, demanding peace in the region, in Barikot near Mingora, in Pakistan's troubled Swat Valley on Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. Pakistan's military has vowed to reinvigorate its efforts in Swat, a formerly peaceful region where Taliban militants have gained ground during 18 months of fighting. (AP Photo/Sherin Zada)
The Big Picture has more fascinating ones:
The government of Pakistan announced on Monday that it would accept Islamic Sharia Law to be implemented in its Swat Valley region, as part of a truce with local Taliban leaders. Militants had been demanding Sharia law, attacking opponents, burning scores of girls' schools and banning many forms of entertainment. Gun battles between Pakistani security forces and militants have killed hundreds, while up to a third of the valley's 1.5 million people have fled. A nuclear power with a growing economy, Pakistan's government is still struggling for control of the country, coping with internal clashes and terrorism, that can bleed over and involve neighbors and allies, including militant attacks in India, and excursions into Afghanistan - inviting U.S. military operations that follow the attackers back into Pakistan. Collected here are 40 recent photos from Pakistan, with a special acknowledgement to the artistry of AP Photographer Emilio Morenatti. (40 photos total)

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