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Madrassa Confrontation In Pakistan Worsens

The head of Islamabad's radical pro-Taliban Lal Masjid, or Red Mosque, announced a call to Jihad against the Musharraf government and issued a stern warning. Maulana Abdul Aziz said, "We have no intention to wage a war against the government leading to a bloodbath. However, if it launches a crackdown on Jamia Hafsa or Lal Masjid, of course our movement would automatically turn into a militant movement."

The Pakistani government has created an all-female commando team ostensibly for the purposes of storming the all-female madrassa that Aziz heads. Jamia Hafsa is believed to have currently 3,000 armed females awaiting confrontation.

Concurrently in Islamabad, protests surrounding Musharraf's sacking of Pakistan's Supreme Court Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry continue. Tuesday, Pakistani police had to put themselves between a group protesting against Musharraf and a group protesting in support of him.

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