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Arif Wazir

Pakistani politician

Died when: 38 years 0 days (456 months)
Star Sign: Taurus

Sardar Muhammad Arif Afghan Wazir (Pashto: محمد عارف افغان وزیر; 2 May 1982 – 2 May 2020) was a Pashtun nationalist politician, activist, and one of the leaders of the Pashtun Tahafuz Movement (PTM).

He was a member of the Pashtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PMAP) and its president for the South Waziristan chapter.He also headed the FATA Political Alliance South Waziristan, which campaigned for the rights of the people of former Federally Administered Tribal Areas.

Wazir's family was long active in the Pashtun nationalist movement and opposed to the Talibanization of the former tribal areas, earning them the militants' enmity.

His father (Saadullah Jan), two brothers (Ibrahim and Ishaq), two uncles (Malik Mirzalam and Feroz Khan) and two cousins (Tariq and Farooq Wazir) were all murdered in targeted killings, and he also survived assassination attempts himself.

He spent a significant amount of time in jail in the last few years of his life, especially after joining the PTM in March 2018.

On 1 May 2020, as he was driving home in Wanna just before the evening's fast-breaking meal, he was critically injured when gunmen from another vehicle shot him three times in the head, neck, and arm near his home.

He succumbed to his injuries on the next day after being shifted to Islamabad for emergency surgery, becoming the 18th male member of his extended family to be killed by militants since 2003.

Amnesty International called on Pakistani officials to vigorously investigate the attack.The inspector-general of Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Police, Sanaullah Abbasi, said that Wazir was murdered because of his recent interview in Kabul, Afghanistan.

A post from the verified Twitter account of the Governor of Punjab, Chaudhry Mohammad Sarwar, blamed the Indian intelligence agency RAW and the Afghan intelligence agency NDS for the attack.

However, when a reporter requested the information minister Shibli Faraz to share progress about finding the murderers, he declined, saying "I don't know the details" of Wazir's assassination.

PTM claimed that “state-sponsored militants” and the so-called "good Taliban" were responsible for the assassination, and held widespread protests during which several of its activists, including Gilaman and Nadeem Askar, were arrested by Pakistani authorities.

Wazir was survived by a widow and five children.On 14 March 2022, the Pashtun National Jirga in Bannu demanded that Wazir's death be investigated by a credible judicial commission headed by Justice Qazi Faez Isa, and that the report be made public.

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