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2021-02-18 India-Pakistan
Security Forces Gun Down 3 Terrorists in an Encounter in North Waziristan: ISPR
[DailyTimes.pk] During an intelligence based operation (IBO), security forces killed 3 Lions of Islam from the Aleem Khan Khushali group. According to a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) the encounter took place in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa’s North Wazoo district on Tuesday.

"These Lions of Islam were involved in murder, kidnapping for ransom, extortion, fire raid on security forces and improvised bomb (IED) explosions," ISPR added. "Sanitisation of the area was carried out."

As told by military’s media wing the operation was carried out after the security forces noticed the presence of Lions of Islam in a compound in North Waziristan’s area Mir Ali.

The ISPR said that 42-year-old resident of Chitral Naib Subedar Aminullah and a 24-year-old resident of Landi Kotal Sepoy Sher Zamin embraced martyrdom and four other security personnel received injuries during the operation.

Previously two bad boyz were potted on 18th January during an IBO in Nargosa area of South Waziristan The military’s media wing further added to the previous operation that "During an intense fire, two Lions of Islam Usman Ali and Waheed Lashtai were killed and one was injured and apprehended".

Related from January 6:
Waziristan Militant Leader Aleem Khan Ustad Joins Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan

[Defence.pk] On December 15, Mufti Noor Wali Mehsud, the emir of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), appeared in a video released by Umar Media, the official media arm of TTP (Umar Media, December 15). This video demonstrated a continuation of the series of mergers of Pakistani jihadist groups into TTP, which started in July 2020.

The video contains footage of the bay’ah (oath of allegiance) ceremonies of two jihadist organizations from Waziristan, Pakistan, including Mulawi Aleem Khan Ustad, and Commander Umar Azzam groups. Khan is a powerful jihadist commander who joined TTP with nine commanders and dozens of fighters (Tribal News, November 28).

TTP announced the mergers of both groups into its ranks on November 27 (Umar Media, November 27). The video shows that the merger ceremony apparently took place outside Afghanistan, most probably in Waziristan’s remote areas bordering the country. The footages include video clips of both commanders’ oath-taking, holding Mahsud’s hands and announcing their pledges of allegiance to him.

Aleem Khan is from the tribal North Waziristan district, in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, which served as the base of al-Qaeda for more than a decade after 9/11, from 2004 to 2015 (Asia Times, November 5). Khan was deputy to Hafiz Gul Bahadur—the al-Qaeda host and shadow governor of Waziristan (Gandhara, March 16, 2015). The Gul Bahadur group became the largest local group in Waziristan between 2008 and 2014 and even hosted TTP in North Waziristan after the organization lost its strongholds in neighboring South Waziristan.

Gul Bahadur’s decline started after the 2014 military operation in North Waziristan, when the jihadists escaping that military operation sought shelter in Afghanistan. [1] Khan disassociated from Bahadur that same year and since then has operated independently (The News, August 20, 2014).

During this period, serious differences emerged that would divide Khan and Bahadur, resulting in the latter ultimately seeking leadership of the group (The News, August 20, 2014). Bahadur alleged that Khan was in league with the Pakistani government, and in return was receiving protection for his areas and tribesmen from military operations. As a reaction to this accusation, Khan announced that he was now emir of the group, removing Bahadur, who had moved to the Afghanistan side of the border to escape military operations.

A few months later, Aleem Khan somewhat confirmed what Bahadur had accused him of when he surprisingly announced an end to the war against the Pakistani Army, and offered his group’s assistance in returning the internally displaced people (IDPs) of North Waziristan back to their homes. Like thousands of others from North Waziristan, these IDPs had left their homes due to the military operations that took place in 2014. His group had taken responsibility for restoring peace in North Waziristan and threatened military operations against all those aiming to engage in an insurgency against the state (Daily Pakistan, March 16 2015).

Thus, the merger of the Aleem Khan group into TTP is important from two perspectives. First, it is a major blow to the Pakistani Army’s efforts to coopt the anti-state militants in Waziristan for peace and the restoration of government authority in the area (Gandahara, July 24 2018). Second, Khan’s bay’ah to TTP is the first time that a jihadist group from North Waziristan is joining the organization. It is particularly signicant that Khan’s group is a strong splinter of the Gul Bahadur organization.

The TTP and the Gul Bahadur group share a history of rivalry rooted in the tribal politics of the region. The senior leadership of al-Qaeda, particularly its Afghanistan-Pakistan chief, Mustafa Abu Yazid, tried to unify the TTP and Bahadur group, but the latter did not accept it for long [2]. Gul Bahadur’s rejection has roots in the historical tribal feuds between Mehsuds and Wazir tribes of Waziristan. The Wazirs considers themselves superior to Mehsuds [3]. Thus, Gul Bahadur, being the strongest leader of the Wazir tribes, never agreed to merge into TTP, which was led by the Mehsuds.
Posted by trailing wife 2021-02-18 02:21|| E-Mail|| Front Page|| [6479 views ]  Top
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