Pakistan: Rockets hit office of European Union funded project in Pakistan, no casualties

The Mercury News
Two rockets hit a European Union-funded project that has been pushing women's development in the backward and remote corners of northwest Pakistan, police said Tuesday.
Dir, which is roughly 200 kilometers (120 miles) northwest of Islamabad, is a deeply conservative region of Pakistan. Its religious leaders have encouraged attacks on international organizations, particularly those that press for women's rights or employ women. In recent years, radical Islamic leaders in the area have tried to close down international aid projects in Dir, and have scrawled graffiti on walls warning women not to leave their home and threatening to kill foreign workers.

WLUML adds that International development organisations are not the only ones to have come under attack in the regions of Pakistan that border Afghanistan. Following the onset of the US bombing campaign in Afghanistan in October 2001, offices of many women's community based organisations and local human rights groups were attacked. Groups working on women's health and education were particularly targeted. Although the mobs were led by politico-religious extremists, local activists noted that they were also being incited by other local political elites who feared that the growing local respect for women's and human rights groups and their development work would undermine their success in local council elections.