Waziristan is located in the northwest of Pakistan, along the Afghan border, and is often referred to as “the most dangerous place on earth.”
The population is roughly 1o million Pashtuns throughout the FATA region. With limited economic opportunities, most earn a livelihood from sheep rearing. Educational opportunities are also scarce. Male literacy rates are approximately 33% and female literacy rates are less than 8%.
Fundamentalist Taliban leaders have imposed strict social laws for generations. Males must head all households, while women and girls are often forced to stay inside, denied the chance to go to school, and are even married off at a young age.
While the region is the a of dangerous extremism, there is still beauty in Waziristan. Graceful mountains blanket the region, embroidery is made by hand, faith is strong, families are close, and children continue to dream.