Negotiating the Siege of the LAL Masjid

Negotiating the Siege of the LAL Masjid

ISBN: 9780199400348 SKU: 103438 Categories: , Publisher , Formats: ,


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In January 2007, the students of Lal Masjid (Red Mosque) took over the Children’s Library in Islamabad in protest against the Government of Pakistan’s decision to demolish mosques and seminaries built illegally on government land. After six months of escalating tensions, the crisis culminated in an eight-day siege and eventually ended by an armed assault resulting in over a hundred casualties and even more injured. This tragic outcome of the standoff had a devastating spillover effect as it turned into a rallying cry for Islamist militancy in the country. Based on extensive field research including interviews with key actors on all sides, this book provides an in-depth analytical account of the events that unfolded during the siege, with specific emphasis on the successes and failures of the negotiation process. It outlines important lessons and practical guidelines for crisis negotiators, incident commanders, and political decision-makers in order to provide them with the necessary tools to manage possible similar crises in the future more effectively.