THE FUTURE OF EXTREMISM IN PAKISTAN

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The Future of Extremism in Pakistan
A Twenty Year Forward Look to 2028

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VIOLENT EXTREMISM IN PAKISTAN

“Extremism” is politically loaded term that can mean different things to different people
Refers to ideas/mindsets that are assumed to be rejected by vast majority of people in a particular society
Connotes illegitimacy of those views
Can be associated with violent actions to further “extremist” goals

Many forms of violent extremism have existed in Pakistan
Violence against society by an authoritarian state
Violence against state by ethnic groups
Violence against state and society by religious sectarian groups

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RELIGIOUS-BASED EXTREMISM IN PAKISTAN

Islamic extremism and militancy currently poses, in terms of scale and scope, the most significant threat to Pakistan’s unity
Revolutionary agenda
Aimed towards antithesis of progressive, modern, and developmental state

Wide range in size, sectarian agenda, and scope of activities of these groups
Harkat ul Mujahideen and Harkat ul Ansar: Afghan focused, NWFP based, madrassa educated
Lashkar e Tayaba, Jaish e Muhammad, Hizb ul Mujahideen: Kashmir focused, Punjab based, public school educated

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GROWTH OF ISLAMIC EXTREMIST GROUPS IN PAKISTAN

Number of Extremist Groups by Province
60
Punjab
Sindh
NWFP
Other

40
20
0
1985

1990

1995

2000

2002

Additional 35 extremist groups whose date of origin is unknown
– 26 are Punjab based
– Remainder are Sindh and NWFP based

Estimated that over 100 such groups remain today despite government actions against them
Source: Amir Rana, A to Z to Jihadi Organizations, 2002

Jan Consulting

DRIVERS OF ISLAMIC EXTREMISM IN PAKISTAN
Regional context and state policy

High

FATA as wilfully ungoverned space
Madrassa
environment
Social immobility

Lack of

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