Pakistan's government fired an official who played a key role in crafting a peace deal that has given the Taliban control of the Swat Valley as militants partially pulled backed from a neighboring area they occupied this past week. The Taliban retreat from the Buner district back to their camps in Swat headed off what some feared was an imminent clash with the military. But government and Taliban officials said "local" Taliban were still in Buner, just 60 miles from Islamabad. The situation remained volatile and a growing number of Pakistani officials, foreign diplomats and analysts are saying it is only a matter of time before the Swat peace deal collapses. In one indication that Pakistan's leaders are beginning to question the deal, the top administrator for Swat and the surrounding areas, Syed Mohammed Javed, was fired Saturday for maintaining close contacts with a number of wanted Taliban commanders and, officials suspect, perhaps even al Qaeda's deputy leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri, who is also wanted by the U.S. [pakistan] Associated Press A senior security official said Mr. Javed could face punitive action for dealing with the wanted militants. The official did not provide any further details. Officials said Mr. Javed was instrumental in negotiating what now appears to be a very one-sided peace deal in Swat, a one-time Alpine vacation getaway where the army has pulled back and the Taliban have been allowed to impose a harsh brand of Islamic law, prohibiting men from shaving their beards and banning women from leaving their homes without male relatives. At the same time, the militants have kept their weapons and begun pressing into other districts, confirming the fears of many U.S. and Pakistani officials that Swat would become a base for the Taliban to push into the country's heavily populated heartland. Apart from Buner, the Taliban also made inroads this week into the Shangla district. Mr. Javed, a career civil servant who keeps a long a beard and is known for his strict religious views, was appointed last year as the commissioner of Malakand, a region that includes Swat and Buner. He was not immediately available for comment Saturday evening. But he spoke with reporters earlier in the day as the Malakand commissioner, saying the Taliban had left Buner and that six platoons of paramilitary troops had been deployed to police stations in the district. Mr. Javed's close relationship with Sufi Mohammed, a radical cleric whose son-in-law leads the Taliban faction fighting in Swat, gave him the influence needed to negotiate the deal with the militants. It was struck in mid-February after 18 months of fighting that saw some 3,000 Taliban battle four times as many soldiers to a stand still. But President Asif Ali Zardari resisted finalizing the deal, only doing so earlier this month after it was overwhelmingly approved by Pakistan's parliament. Officials said that by allowing the Taliban to set up Islamic courts to replace the often corrupt Pakistani courts in Swat, the deal would undermine the militants' rallying cry of justice for the poor. Instead, the deal seems to have emboldened the militants. U.S. and Pakistani officials say thousands more militants from a spectrum of Islamist groups have poured into Swat since the deal was first struck. Mr. Javed is alleged to have hosted some of their leaders, including Faqir Mohammed, a Taliban commander from Bajaur, a tribal region on the Afghan border where Pakistani soldiers have battled insurgents for months. Swat Taliban leaders have also said they would welcome al Qaeda leaders to the valley, and intelligence officials in Islamabad believe that Mr. al-Zawahiri has repeatedly visited the region since February. Mr. Javed's "policy of appeasement helped the Taliban to take control of Buner," said a senior Pakistani official. Most of the Taliban fighters who poured into Buner from Swat began pulling out Friday after soldiers and paramilitary troops started massing on the fringes of the district, threatening to evict the insurgents by force if they did not leave within 24 hours. Most had left by Saturday, apparently satisfying the military's demands. But residents said there were still Taliban who lived in or grew up in Buner patrolling the district, a fact acknowledged by Muslim Khan, a Taliban spokesman. He would not say how many of these local Taliban remained in Buner. But he insisted the Taliban wanted to respect the peace deal, which they have insisted also covers Buner, an assertion disputed by Pakistani officials and military officers. "We have withdrawn from Buner to show our commitment to make the peace deal a success," Mr. Khan told reporters. Pakistani soldiers, meanwhile, moved into the Dir district, north of Swat, on Saturday and imposed a curfew after reports the Taliban were kidnapping prominent residents for ransom, security officials said.