The siege of Lal Masjid (Urdu: لال مسجد محاصرہ, code-named Operation Sunrise) was a confrontation in July 2007 between Islamic fundamentalist militants and the Government of Pakistan led by General Pervez Musharraf and Shaukat Aziz Administration, then Prime minister of Pakistan. The focal points of the operation were the Lal Masjid ("Red Mosque") and the Jamia Hafsa madrasah complex in Islamabad, Pakistan.
Since January 2006, Lal Masjid and the adjacent Jamia Hafsa madrasah had been operated by Islamic militants led by two brothers, Maulana Abdul Aziz and Abdul Rashid Ghazi. This organization supported the imposition of Sharia (Islamic religious law) in Pakistan and openly called for the overthrow of the Pakistani government, led by its President Pervez Musharraf. Lal Masjid was in constant conflict with authorities in Islamabad for 18 months prior to the military operation. They engaged in violent demonstrations, destruction of property, kidnapping, arson, and armed clashes with authorities. After Lal Masjid militants set fire to the Ministry of Environment building and attacked the Army Rangers who guarded it, the military responded, and the siege of the Lal Masjid complex began.
The complex was besieged from July 3 to July 11, 2007, while negotiations were attempted between the militants and the state's Shujaat Hussain and Ijaz-ul-Haq. Once negotiations failed, the complex was stormed and captured by the Pakistan Army's Special Service Group. The conflict resulted in 154 deaths, and 50 militants were captured. The assault resulted in pro-Taliban rebels along the Afghanistan border nullifying a 10-month-old peace agreement with the Pakistani Government. This event triggered the Third Waziristan War, which marked another surge in militancy and violence in Pakistan and has resulted in more than 3,000 casualties.
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