In January 2007, the students of the radical Lal Masjid (Red Mosque) took over a childrens library in protest of the Government of Pakistans decision to demolish mosques and seminaries built illegally on government land. After six months of escalating tension, the crisis culminated in an eightday siege, and eventually ended by an armed assault, resulting in the deaths of over a hundred people and injuries to many more. This tragic outcome of the standoff had a devastating spillover effect, as it turned into a rallying cry for Islamist militancy in the country. Since the siege, militant violence, such as suicide bombings, has continued to escalate. Based on extensive field research, including interviews with key actors on all sides, this book provides an indepth 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 tools necessary to manage possible similar crises in the future more effectively.
Adam Dolnik, PhD is Professor of Terrorism Studies at the University of Wollongong in Australia, and a former Professor of Counterterrorism at the George C. Marshall Center for European Security Studies in Germany. In the past, Dolnik has also served as Chief Trainer at the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research (ICPVTR) in Singapore, and as a researcher at the Weapons of Mass Destruction Terrorism Research Project at the Monterey Institute of International Studies in California. Dolnik has delivered lectures and training courses on terrorism and hostage negotiation in over 50 countries, and regularly conducts field research in challenging environments (for example in North Caucasus, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Uganda, Sudan, Southern Philippines, DRC, Colombia, among others). Khuram Iqbal is co-author of Pakistan: Terrorism Ground Zero. After receiving a doctorate in Policing, Intelligence and Counter-Terrorism from Macquarie University (Australia) he joined National Defence University of Pakistan as an Assistant Professor of Counter-Terrorism. Previously, he served as Research Coordinator at Pakistan Institute for Peace Studies, Islamabad, where he planned and executed a number of research projects on radicalization and terrorism in Pakistan. A graduate in Strategic Studies from the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Singapore, Khuram Iqbal has also worked as senior analyst at the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research (ICPVTR), Singapore.