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Pakistan Timeline - 2017

Date

Incidents

January 1

Police arrested at least three terrorists and seized explosives from their custody during an action in SITE Town area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. The SSP of West Zone, Nasir Aftab said in a joint action, launched by Police and personnel of an intelligence agency, three terrorists affiliated to a banned outfit were apprehended and recovered explosive material and detonators from their possession.

Pakistan lashed out at India, saying that New Delhi had “deployed” terrorism as an instrument of state policy in the garb of denouncing terrorism. India, it added, was involved in perpetrating, sponsoring, supporting and financing terrorism. The remarks came in a statement that Foreign Office spokesman Nafees Zakaria issued in response to queries regarding reports about the failure of an Indian move in the United Nations sanctions committee.

The number of target killings in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh, have significantly decreased by 253 percent during 2016, as compared to 2015, while the menace of extortions have slashed by 36 percent during the same period, the annual report of Sindh Police said. However, Police in the report have claimed that the number of target killings has reduced because of the good performance of the Police while the report has not mentioned the achievement of Sindh Rangers' Karachi operation continued for the past three years.

Meanwhile, the Sindh Police’s Counter-Terrorism Department is planning to deradicalise and rehabilitate an estimated 300 militants held in different jails of the province with the help of qualified psychologists, said Additional Inspector General of the CTD, Dr Sanaullah Abbasi. Under the proposed initiative, the CTD would conduct psychological profiling of the arrested militants to ascertain the possible factors, leading to militancy as a move to rehabilitate them. “The CTD Sindh has taken an initiative to create psychological profiles of arrested militants in the province,” said Dr Sanaullah Abbasi. He said a unit of the CTD Sindh had been deputed to go to jails to create such profiles along the lines of a proforma created by the NACTA to better identify the factors that lead to radicalisation of young men. The CTD chief said the unit concerned had around 15 police personnel, who would collect data about the imprisoned militants in Karachi and other parts of Sindh. Dr Abbasi said that there were 250 to 300 militants in different prisons of the province.

January 2

Six FCB officials were injured after their vehicle came under attack near Western Bypass in Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan. The personnel were en route to firing range of the training camp when terrorists attacked the van with a remote-controlled bomb. The injured officials are Subedar Muhammad Shafi, Hawaldar Awalur Rehman, Naik Latif, Sepoys Saif, Raza Rehman and Qaim Khan. According to the Bomb Disposal Squad, eight to ten Kg explosives were used in the bombing.

January 3

The CTD officials of Hazara Division arrested two TTP terrorists, Muhammad Nawaz alias Abrash and Azizullah alias Hazaza, from Batagaram District of KP. Both the terrorists are said to have received militant training in Kunar area in Afghanistan. Nawaz and Azizullah were involved in a number of terrorism incidents in the past and were also found plotting an attack in the Batagaram region at the time of their arrest. CTD officials said the two men revealed major terrorism plots in Batagaram District during their initial interrogation. A video clip of DPO Batagaram was also recovered from their possession. 

Deaths linked to violence in the country decreased significantly in 2016, dropping 45 percent compared with the previous year, CRSS report said. Some 2,610 people lost their lives due to violence during the period compared with 4,647 in 2015. "There was nearly a 45 percent reduction in the number of violence-related fatalities in 2016, which continued the trend of reduction from 2014," the report said. "In fact, since 2014, there has been an overall reduction of nearly 66 percent." December was the least violent month for the country during the year. Two provinces - Punjab and Balochistan - had a marginal increase in violence during 2016. Balochistan suffered the most fatalities as violence-related deaths rose from 719 in 2015 to 798 last year, an upsurge of nearly 10 percent, followed by Punjab, which lost 424 people during 2016 - the highest number of fatalities in the province during the last four years. Both provinces were the targets of suicide attacks that increased the casualty count. Balochistan had three suicide attacks, leaving 186 dead, while Punjab had one suicide attack at a park crowded with families on Easter Sunday, killing 75, including many children.

January 4

Three persons, including a Sub-Inspector, were killed in firing incidents at various parts of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

A SI of Police Iqbal Mehmood, probing some targeted killing cases was shot dead and two others injured in the night when unidentified assailants opened fire at them on main Rashid Minhas Road in Gulistan-i-Jauhar Town of Karachi. DSP Shara-i-Faisal Ali Anwar Soomro said that assailants were chasing SI Iqbal Mehmood who was riding a bike along with his friend Waseem. "As they disembarked from their motorbike to purchase some items from a vendor near Lal Flats, gunmen travelling in a car opened fire on them and fled," he said. Mahmood's friend Waseem and a passerby teenager Hafeez Ullah sustained bullet wounds in the incident. The deceased SI Iqbal Mehmood was posted at investigation section of Ferozabad Police Station. Investigators collected three spent bullet casings fired from a 9mm pistol from the crime scene.

One person, identified as Rizwan, who worked as a Police informer against drug peddlers, was shot dead in a firing incident in Korangi Industrial Area under Korangi Town of Karachi. SSP Nauman Siddiqui said that the Police had arrested the killer and recovered weapons from him.

A civilian was shot dead in a target-killing incident at Jamshed Road near Pardah Park in Jamshed Town area of Karachi. 

January 5

Unidentified militants shot dead two people in Jinnah Town of Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan. According to Police, both victims were going somewhere when the assailants riding a motorcycle opened fire on them. Both the men died on the spot.

FCB neutralised a 10 kilograms bomb in the Chithar area of Nasirabad District.

January 6

At least four suspected militants were killed during an exchange of fire with SFs in Uch and other areas of Naseerabad District in Balochistan. A security officer said that SFs conducted a search operation in Uch and other areas of Naseerabad District. Five militants were also arrested. Moreover, nine sanctuaries of militants were demolished by security personnel.

Unidentified assailants shot and injured five Hazara Shias in a suspected sectarian attack community on Spiny Road in the Qila Mubarak area of Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan. DIG, Quetta, Razzak Cheema said that the incident is a targeted attack when five individuals were travelling in a taxi

At least one civilian was killed and two Policemen injured in two separate attacks in North Nazimabad area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Police constable Muhammad Iqbal was injured when unidentified assailants lobbed a hand grenade at Taimuria Police Station in North Nazimabad. Later, 25-year-old Ali Imran was shot dead when unidentified assailants opened fire at Five Star Chowrangi in the same area. Bashir, a traffic police official, was also injured in the firing incident.

The Military Courts - to try civilians on terrorism charges - will expire today at midnight (Night between Friday & Saturday) after which all the terrorism cases against civilian suspects will be transferred to the ATC. The 21st Constitutional Amendment, which had paved the way for setting up the military courts for two years, will become ineffective on January 07. Federal Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said, “The military courts were set up for two years with the consensus of all the political parties. Any extension in these courts is not being considered.” He said ATCs will take up all such cases after expiry of the military courts after January 07.

January 7

The CTD killed six suspected terrorists during an encounter on Faisalabad Bypass Road in Faisalabad District of Punjab. According to CTD Sheikhupura sources, the CTD Lahore on January 6 arrested two terrorists identified as Saadullah Khan and Jahanzeb Khan - allegedly involved in Gulshan Iqbal Park Lahore suicide blast. As per the details, the CTD Lahore team was taking the arrested terrorists to Kot Pindi Daas to arrest other terrorists when their alleged accomplices attacked the team and got released Saadullah Khan and Jahanzeb Khan. The incident led to a cross firing between Police party and suspected terrorists. Resultantly, six terrorists were killed while three others managed to escape. The CTD also recovered three motorcycles, Kalashnikovs, pistol, bullets and a huge cache of explosives and hand grenades from them.

A human rights activist, Civil Progressive Alliance Pakistan (CPAP) president Samar Abbas (40) has gone missing from the federal capital Islamabad. Mr. Abbas is an activist based in Karachi who belongs to various forums that have been raising their voice voicing against atrocities committed against minority groups in the country.

Earlier, Social media activists Waqas Goraya and Asim Saeed disappeared from Lahore on January 4, Ahmed Raza Naseer went missing from Sheikhupura on January 7 while Salman Haider vanished from Islamabad’s Bani Gala area on January 6.

January 8

The Sindh CTD Transnational Terrorism Intelligence Group in-charge Raja Umer Khattab said that there might be surge in sectarian violence in city if LEAs don’t chalk out a strategy to clamp down on sleeper cells. The sleeper cells of AQIS and the LeJ are believed to be involved in the recent attacks on Policemen and there might be a surge in sectarian violence in the coming days, Raja Umer Khattab said. “In the past AQIS has used homemade bombs containing ball bearings in the Taimuria Police Station a Russian-made grenade was used, something that is new,” Raja Umer Khattab added. “AQIS primarily used handmade bombs. They had started off by making ball bombs and IEDs. The use of a grenade now suggests that sleeper cells of these terrorist outfits are now active and their members possess new kinds of weapons and explosives,” Raja Umer Khattab added further.

January 9

The BDU neutralised a 10 kilograms bomb in Karkhano Market of Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Police said it was a remote-controlled device.

Bannu Special Police Unit arrested three suspected TTP terrorists from the Chando Khel area of Lakki Marwat District. Police recovered a Kalashnikov rifle, three grenades, an anti-personnel mine, explosives and 30 bore pistols. The terrorists were identified as Waliullah, Amanullah and Ravib. The arrested militants were involved in target killing, extortion and attacking law enforcers. The arrested persons also stole the rifle of police official Ali Badshah after killing him.

The Balochistan High Court issued bailable arrest warrants for former President General (Retired) Pervez Musharraf in JWP leader Nawab Akbar Bugti's murder case. A divisional bench of BHC passed this order during hearing of a review petition challenging acquittal of the former president by Anti-Terrorism Court. Former Balochistan chief minister and governor Nawab Akbar Bugti was killed in Dera Bugti District on August 26, 2006.

The CPLC in its report has identified sixty 'hot spots' in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh, where the street criminals operate the most and incidents of snatchings take place. These areas including PIDC, Tariq Road, Sakhi Hassan, Hassan Square, Bahadurabad, Aisha Manzil and the NIPA Chowrangi which are high-risk areas and even some areas in city's posh localities such as Defence and Clifton make it to the list. The CPLC report further states that in 2016, 19,336 incidents of mobile snatching were reported which is an increase of 38 percent as compared to 2015. "Besides mobile snatching, around 22,358 motorcycles were snatched, which is 24 percent more as compared to 2015," stated the report. However, CPLC has claimed that car theft and its snatching incidents have reduced substantially in Karachi during 2016. All this is despite the passage of more than three years of Karachi operation, which is claimed to be successful by the Rangers and the provincial government adds the news report.

Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan stunned the entire opposition in the Senate by stating that “banned sectarian organisations could not be equated with other banned terrorist organisations”. The Interior Minister gave the remarks to justify his meeting with Ahmed Ludhianvi, the chief of banned sectarian organisation ASWJ.

January 10

Unidentified assailants killed a Police constable, Khalid Shaikh (30), near his house on Jamshed Road in the Soldier Bazaar area of Karachi, provincial capital of Sindh.

January 11

JI ameer (chief), Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Mushtaq Ahmad called for merger of FATA and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and also stated that the people of the FATA were deprived of basic and democratic rights for the last seven decades, reports The News. Mushtaq Ahmed also rejected the FCR, saying it was a black law. “If no solid steps were taken for the merger of the FATA with KP and uplift of the tribal areas, we will have no other option but to march on Islamabad,” he said. Mushtaq Ahmad asked the Government to announce PKR 1,000 billion uplift package for the tribal areas.

Earlier, JUI-F leaders on January 8 rejected the federal government’s plan to merge FATA with KP and threatened to launch a protest movement if any changes were ‘imposed’ on the tribal people. “We request the federal government, especially the prime minister, to stop implementation of the reforms until every stockholder is taken on board, otherwise the JUI-F would start an agitation campaign across FATA,” threatened Abdul Shakoor, head (FATA) JUI-F.

January 12

Unidentified assailants shot dead a journalist, Muhammad Jan (37), in Kalat town of same District in Balochistan. Muhammad Jan, who worked for local Urdu language daily newspaper ‘Qudrat’, was shot dead while he was on his way home on a motorcycle. “Two attackers on motorcycle opened fire on him, using a pistol and killing him on the spot,” Senior Police Officer Muhammad Ali said.

January 13

The FO rejected allegations of terrorist safe havens in the FATA, saying Pakistan does not allow its territory to be used for attacks against any other country. Responding to queries during the weekly news briefing, FO Spokesperson Nafees Zakaria said Afghanistan was infested with a number of terrorist organisations due to its instability. This, he added, created space for terrorist elements such as Haqqani network's leadership, TTP, Daesh, and al Qaeda, among other terrorist organisations. "It is, therefore, not appropriate to blame others for the adversities due to the deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan. The oft repeated claims regarding safe havens are, therefore, more of a rhetoric than anything else," the spokesperson maintained.

The Federal Government claimed that it has been spending an additional PKR 250 billion annually on security since the launch of Operation Zarb-e-Azb and that it cannot sustain the burden alone, but the two big provinces have already refused to share the cost. In a position paper it has sent to the four federating units to convince them to pay for security, the NFC Secretariat claimed that security-related additional spending stood at PKR 732.4 billion since June 2014. This includes PKR 283 billion allocations for the financial year 2016-17. “Since 2014-15 alone, when new security operations started, the federal government has been spending some PKR 300 billion specifically for meeting the expenditures related to security, rehabilitation and capacity-building of security forces to meet the challenges of law and order,” the finance ministry note stated.

January 15

Three Policemen were injured when unidentified militants attacked the convoy of a Qatari prince in Musakhel District of Balochistan in the evening. Security sources said that the militants opened indiscriminate fire on the convoy, as a result of which District Police Officer Majeed Dasti and two other security officials received bullet wounds. The Qatari prince remained unharmed in the attack, said Senior District Administration official Mohammad Yasir.

Army and LEAs carried out joint combing operations in Shaheen town, Warsak Road, Dalazak and Pakka Ghulam areas of Peshawar, the provincial capital of KP, in the evening. According to ISPR, during the combing operation 58 suspects were apprehended including five Afghan nationals. Huge cache of arms, ammunition and drugs were recovered during the operation.

January 16

Unidentified militants killed two Police officials in different areas of Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan. Militants opened fire at a Police constable in the Killi Deba area of Quetta, killing him on the spot. In another incident, militants opened fire near the Passport Office area and killed another Police official on duty. The attackers managed to escape from the scene in both cases, with Police officials terming the incidents as acts of target killings.

The special policing powers granted to Pakistan Rangers, Sindh, by the Provincial Government under Anti-Terrorism Act of 1997 to carry out raids and arrest suspects ended. The Government had extended the Rangers' Policing powers on October 18, 2016, for 90 days thus entitling them to carry out raids, snap checking and arresting the people in the provincial capital only. Sindh Government, however, had not issued any official statement in connection with extension of the powers by the end of the day.

January 17

The CTD personnel shot dead four suspected militants belonging to a banned outfit near the Sheikhupura Bypass in Sheikhupura District of Punjab in the wee hours. CTD officials claimed that they had been tipped off by intelligence sources regarding the presence of the suspected terrorists. Upon reaching the place, an armed conflict initiated between the CTD officials and the suspected militants. Four alleged terrorists were gunned down by CTD while three managed to flee. Police managed to recover arms, ammunition and explosive material from the suspected militants.

January 18

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah approved the summary extending Rangers' special powers in Karachi for 90 days. The special powers will grant Rangers special Policing powers in the metropolis. The summary to extend the powers of the paramilitary force had been sent to Syed Murad Ali Shah by the Home Minister.

The Rangers were given extension last on October 16, 2016 by Murad Ali Shah. Under the Anti-Terrorism Act of 1997, Rangers have been granted special powers to raid and take into custody suspects.

JuD has filed a petition in the Islamabad High Court seeking the removal of its name from the watch list under Schedule 2 of the ATA 1997. Raja Rizwan Abbasi filed JuD’s petition before the IHC. JuD is alleged to be an incarnation of the banned LeT and was placed on the watchlist in December 2008.

January 19

Police recovered four dead bodies from an empty plot in Steel Town area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Malir Town SSP Rao Anwar claimed that the four victims had been shot to death adding that the corpses bore torture marks. 

Two SF personnel were killed after unidentified militants opened fire on them in Kohlu area of Balochistan. The deceased were identified as constable Shero and Khawand Bukhsh. The militants managed to flee the scene.

The Senate (The upper house of Parliament) was told that certain foreign intelligence agencies funded [militant] groups in Pakistan to destabilise it. Answering a question about major sources of funding being used in acts of terrorism in the country, Minister of State for Interior Baleeghur Rahman said it was difficult to pinpoint with 100 per cent accuracy the sources of terrorism funding. But some of the generally perceived sources include extortion and funding by foreign intelligence agencies. He said that militants were known to extort money from drug dealers and producers operating in the areas straddling the Pakistan-Afghan border. Giving details of the investigations being conducted to collect information about terrorism funding, he said 844 such cases were under investigation, including 498 registered under the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act, 230 under anti-money laundering law and 116 cases of suspicious transactions reported by the financial monitoring unit of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).

The CoAS General Qamar Javed Bajwa met leaders from the business and trader communities and assured them of continuation of the security operation in Karachi, the statement released by the ISPR said. "The Karachi operation will continue till the elimination of crime in the city," said Army chief. He added that all possible measures will be taken to restore peace in Karachi, and said that the strategy for Karachi would remain the same and there would be no change in policy.

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said that his Government would never allow terrorists and religious fanatics to play with the lives of innocent people even if the Federal Government refuses to cooperate with it. This he said while presiding over the Sindh cabinet meeting here at the Sindh Secretariat. Briefing the cabinet on the response of Ministry of Interior to ban 94 madrassa's allegedly involved in promoting terrorism, the Chief Minister said that in the Apex committee the list of the madrassa's was presented. The Committee was told that 94 madrassa's were involved in terrorist activities. They had presented solid evidences gathered from the terrorists arrested by Law Enforcement Agencies and they had revealed startling disclosures against the said madrassa's.

January 21

At least 25 people were killed and more than 87 others were injured in a bomb blast at the Sabzi Mandi (vegetable market) area of Parachinar in Kurram Agency of FATA in the morning. A statement issued by the ISPR said IED blast took place at 08:50am. Government official Shahid Khan said the explosion took place when the market was crowded with retailers buying fruits and vegetables. In a text message sent to journalists, the al-Alami (International) faction of LeJ claimed that it, along with the TTP splinter Shehryar Mehsud group, carried out the attack. The Shehryar Mehsud group did not independently claim the bombing.  

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor, Engr Iqbal Zafar Jhagra strongly condemned the bomb blast and said "We will continue our struggle till eliminating the last terrorist from FATA". The terrorist, he added, could never deter our courage, since we are determined to follow them to the extreme extent. He further directed the political administration to expeditiously complete relief activities and no effort should be spared in ensuring best ever treatment facilities to the injured.

The number of Pakistanis under detention in Saudi Arab jails on terror charges reached 69 with the arrest of a woman in Jeddah’s Al-Naseem District during a security operation. According to a report in Saudi newspaper Arab News, Fatima Ramadan Balochi Murad was arrested along with her Saudi husband from an apartment in Al-Naseem District by security agencies after a tip-off. A recent statement issued by the Interior Ministry through its Tawasul (communications) portal said that 5,085 terror suspects from 40 countries are in detention in five intelligence prisons in the Kingdom.

January 22

Unidentified assailants opened fire and killed two persons in Satellite Town area of Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan. Police officials said the gunmen were on a motorcycle when they opened fire and critically injured two tribal locals. The injured were rushed to the Civil Hospital in Quetta but they succumbed to their injuries. The motive behind the attack remains to be ascertained. The assailants escaped unhurt from the crime scene.

The COAS General Qamar Javed Bajwa said terrorists would not be allowed to derail the stability of FATA. According to a statement issued by ISPR Director General Major General Asif Ghafoor, General Qamar Javed Bajwa said this during his visit to Parachinar and Peshawar. The COAS was given a detailed briefing on January 21’s bombing in Parachinar. General Bajwa lauded the support of tribal people in combating terrorism and acknowledged their sacrifices for peace. He said that with their support the Army, FC and other law enforcers have done a great job in stabilising the area and terrorists will fail to derail it. The COAS lauded their efforts in maintaining tribal and sectarian harmony which is source of national integration. He said, "Pakistan belongs to all of us without any religious, provincial, tribal, linguistic, ethnic, sectarian or any other discrimination."

January 23

At least eight security personnel were injured when their convoy comes under militant ambush in Gichak area of Panjgur District in Balochistan. "The security personnel were moving through the district's mountainous Gichak area to conduct a raid against miscreants when they were fired upon," said a security official. No arrests were reported after the incident. There was no claim of responsibility for the attack.

The Police recovered two suicide jackets from Abu Bakar mosque under the Paharipura Police Station, on the outskirt of Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. However, no arrests were made. An official at the Paharipura Police Station said that acting on a tip-off Police personnel checked Abu Bakar mosque near Benazir Hospital along the motorway. He said the cops recovered two suicide jackets containing about five kilogramme explosives from the room of the prayer leader of the mosque. However, the prayer leader was not present in the room at the time of the raid.

The CTD arrested two LeJ militants during raided on a house on Airport Road near railway line in Bahawalpur District of Punjab around 3pm. A CTD spokesman said they received information about the presence of ‘terrorists’ planning to attack some installation in Bahawalpur. A CTD team raided the house on Airport Road and arrested two LeJ militants, identified as Khalid Mahmood and Sajjad. Explosive material and two live grenades were recovered from their possession.

January 24

A Shia man, Mohammed Kazim Raza (39), was gunned down in suspected sectarian attack in Gulistan-i-Jauhar area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh, in the night. “It appeared to be a targeted killing incident linked with sectarianism,” said Superintendent Police Dr. Fahad Ahmed.

January 28

Authorities arrested eight more suspects in connection with the Parachinar market bomb blast in Kurram Agency of FATA on January 21, as the number of detained persons reached 15. Officials said that investigations were underway from different angles to arrest the elements involved in the blast. After the explosion, the administration took into custody seven people who were being interrogated. Sources said most of the arrested persons were daily wagers who were present at the spot during auction of vegetables in the morning.

The CTD claimed to have arrested a would-be suicide bomber and another militant, associated with a banned outfit, who were allegedly involved in major terrorist acts in urban and rural Sindh and operating their networks in four major cities of the province besides Jaffarabad District of Balochistan. In a targeted raid conducted in the Manghopir area of Karachi, the CTD team detained the two suspects, Shaukat (would-be suicide bomber) and Abdul Ghani, and seized explosive material, a suicide jacket, a hand grenade and two pistols from their custody. “The held militants, who belonged to the Brohi tribe and were trained in Balochistan, were operating terror networks in Sukkur, Shikarpur, Jacobabad and Sanghar districts in Sindh and Jaffarabad district in Balochistan,” said Sindh CTD chief Dr Sanaullah Abbasi.

An ATC of Bahawalpur District in Punjab jailed two militant for 45 years for carrying explosives and illegal weapons. According to details, Riaz and Peerakh were found guilty of carrying explosives and illegal in the Kot Sabzal Police Station in 2014. After hearing arguments, ATC Judge Khalid Arshad sentenced them to 45 years. The court also ordered to confiscate their property and imposed Rs 500,000 fine each.

The Punjab Home Department issued a warning against possible terrorist attacks in Lahore, the provincial capital of Punjab. According to the notification, TTP trained boys aged about 10 to 12 years are currently in and around major cities of the country including Punjab. Upon investigation an arrested little boy revealed that he was tasked to attack an educational institute close to Abdali Chowk in Lahore. The warning also instructed further security for important installations and called for an immediate meeting of the District Intelligence Committee.

Two Policemen, including an inspector, were shot dead while another official received bullet injuries in Wapda road area of Dera Murad Jamali District in Balochistan in the evening. Police officials said that unidentified militants opened fire at a Police mobile in Wapda road area, killing Inspector Hidayatullah Kolachi on the spot. His gunman succumbed to his injuries on the way to a nearby hospital. The assailants escaped unhurt from the spot.

January 30

A Pakistan Army soldier, Waqas, who was critically injured in a cross-border terrorist attack in Khyber Agency of FATA, succumbed to his injuries. "Terrorists fired from across the border on a Pakistani post in Khyber Agency critically injuring Sepoy Waqas performing duty at the border post," read a statement issued by the ISPR.

At least nine people, including three FC personnel, were injured in a blast on Charsadda road of Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. A contingent of FC personnel was on its way from Mohmand Agency to Peshawar when their vehicle was targeted through a bomb planted on the roadside on Charsadda road, SSP Operations Sajjad Khan said. As a result of the explosion, six civilians and three security men sustained injuries. There has been no claim of responsibility for the blast.

The Punjab Government issued orders to place JuD chief Hafiz Saeed under house arrest. The Government launched a crackdown against JuD and a heavy contingent of Police was deployed around the JuD headquarter and offices in Muridke and Lahore. “A large police team arrived (at JuD headquarters) and told us that Hafiz would be placed under house arrest,” said the secretary of information for JuD, Nadeem Awan. Awan said the Police told them they had an arrest warrant for Saeed and five others at JuD headquarters.

Hafiz Saeed was reportedly present at the Qudsia Mosque located in Chauburji area of Lahore. Contingents of Police and other law-enforcing agencies reached the area and surrounded the premises, sources said.  Police sources further informed that Saeed will be shifted to his residence in the Johar Town area of the provincial capital, Lahore, which will then be declared as a sub-jail. Saeed has been detained under Section 11-EEE (1) of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1977, a notification issued by the Interior Ministry said. Meanwhile, the District intelligence committee has suggested it to the Government to put the JuD chief’s name in fourth schedule. Moreover, national flags have been hoisted at the JuD offices in Lahore, instead of party flags, on the directives of provincial home department, it added. The provincial authorities have also started to remove the banners of JuD from the roads of Lahore.

January 31

The ISPR Director General Major General Asif Ghafoor said JuD chief Hafiz Saeed's house arrest is a State decision in the best national interest. Sending a clear message to India, he said whether it is cold start or any other doctrine, Pakistan is ready to respond with full strength. Major General Asif Ghafoor said the successes of Army and other law enforcers in the war on terror has made Pakistan safer than 2008. To a question about the JuD chief's house arrest, he said that the state took this policy decision in national interest. He denied any foreign pressure behind the move.

February 1

Sindh Rangers claimed to have killed notorious Lyari gang war commander Noor Muhammad alias Baba Ladla in a shootout in Lyari Town area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Two of Baba Ladla’s close associates, Sikandar alias Sikko and Mohammad Yaseen alias Mama, were also killed in the encounter. During the operation, Head Constable Fayyaz and Constable Tufail were also killed. One Kalashnikov, a 9mm pistol, a 9mm mouser and a hand grenade were also recovered from their possession. The “most wanted” suspects were involved in numerous terrorist incidents, said Rangers in a press release. “Baba Ladla was wanted in more than 74 crimes by police,” added the press release further. The Sindh government had placed a head money of PKR Three million on Baba Ladla in 2012.

The press release also revealed that Baba Ladla had, with the help of Uzair Baloch, committed the murders of Shera Pathan, Arshad Pappu and Yasir Arafat. It also stated that in March 2013, Baba Ladla had kidnapped a group of Muhajirs and murdered them. The Rangers press release also claimed the other gangster gunned down in the operation, Sikander alias Siku, was wanted in more than 15 crimes by Police. Sikander was described by Rangers as a close aide of Baba Ladla and also his facilitator. In April 2012, Sikander had committed the murder of Station House Officer (SHO) Fawad Khan while in the same year he had also killed Constable Asif, according to the press release. In 2013, he had tortured and subsequently killed two other men.  Sikander had also been involved in the sale and purchase of illegal weapons.

Security Forces killed a TTP militant and arrested eight other suspects during an exchange of fire in the Luni Jungle area under Kulachi tehsil in Dera Ismail Khan District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Three Army personnel - Major Abbas, Captain Omer and Naik Adnan - were injured during a 'routine sanitisation operation', the ISPR said in a statement.

The Federal Ministry of Interior placed names of JuD Chief Hafiz Saeed Ahmed and 37 other individuals on the ECL. All 30 people who are put on ECL are affiliated with JuD or LeT. The decision to place Hafiz Saeed on ECL was taken two days after JuD chief and four others were put under house arrest. The Interior Ministry has forwarded a letter to all Provincial Governments and the Federal Investigation Agency, which included names of Hafiz Saeed and 37 other individuals placed on the ECL. On January 31, the Federal Ministry of Interior placed FIF and JUD on the Watch List and listed these organizations in the Second Schedule of the ATA 1997 (as amended).

February 2

Police arrested a man, Kashif Hanif (29), whose name appears on the Fourth Schedule of the ATA and is said to have links to the so-called 'Tehreek-e-Taliban Kashmir' (TTK) from Datot village on the outskirts of Rawalakot in PoK. Hanif is suspected of involvement in nine acts of terrorism, the SSP in Poonch Mir Abid said. These acts included a suicide attack on an Army vehicle near Dothan village in January 2010, in which some Army soldiers were injured. He is also suspected of being involved in the planting of a bomb outside a hotel in Rawalakot in September 2010 which killed the bomber was killed and injured a citizen. Hanif has also allegedly been involved in other attacks on military vehicles and installations. SSP Abid said that the accused was wanted since 2010 by five Police Stations of Bagh, Poonch and Sudhnoti Districts for masterminding and executing different subversive activities. The SSP said that the accused belonged to the group of Nazirul Islam alias Shamil Khan who was the first head of the so-called 'TTK' after defecting from Asmatullah Muavia.

February 3

Police stopped JuD from holding a ‘multiparty conference’ (MPC) on Kashmir issue at the press club in Hyderabad city of Sindh reportedly after receiving ‘orders’ from high-ups in the wake of house arrest of JuD chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed. JuD leaders decided to cancel the conference and disperse peacefully. Later, they informed media persons through an SMS that the MPC had to be cancelled because of some ‘unavoidable circumstances’. A heavy contingent of Police had sealed the road with barbed wire outside the press club. JuD Sindh emir Faisal Nadeem said the MPC was not organised by JuD only, it was held by Tehreek-i-Azadi Kashmir, a platform founded by JuD and other parties to discuss Kashmir’s freedom movement.

February 6

A grand jirga of elders from Khyber Agency was held in Jamrud town, opposing the proposed merger of the FATA with KP. Jirga participants urged the Government instead to form an independent FATA Legislative Council or announce a separate province status for the tribal areas. Malik Ghaffar Khan Afridi, a tribal elder, said that the merger of FATA with KP was unacceptable to tribal people. He said the proposed legislative council should be formed to legislate for the tribal region in line with the local social, political and traditions. The elder believed that the FATA reforms proposed by the government committee went against tribal customs and traditions. He said legislation and policies on Fata should be made in light of local traditions and customs. Malik Ghaffar Khan Afridi opposed the extension of the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and high courts to FATA, saying local residents knew very well how to resolve their issues through a jirga system. 

February 7

At least two Policemen were injured, in an explosion, at the main gate of Mandan Police Station in Bannu District of KP. The blast was caused when a suicide bomber rammed his explosive-laden car into the entrance gate of the Police Station. The main gate of the Police Station was completely destroyed due to explosion while the building was partially damaged. The injured Policemen were shifted to a nearby hospital. 

Pakistan handed over four suspected cadres of Afghanistan chapter of IS to Kabul as ‘a gesture of goodwill’. The four were paraded before journalists at the Michni checkpoint before being handed over to Afghan officials at the Torkham border crossing in Khyber Agency of FATA. Landi Kotal Assistant Political Agent Niaz Mohammad told reporters that Javed Khan, Safiullah, Talmeen Khan and Niamatullah, all hailing from Nangarhar province of Afghanistan, had been arrested by intelligence agencies in Peshawar after they received information about the militants’ presence in the city.

The Punjab Government giving a clean chit to all educational institutes - including 15,000 madrassas - has declared that no seminary or public and private institute is involved in teaching hate material to students. During the Punjab Assembly session, Law Minister Rana Sanaullah while commenting on a resolution moved by a treasury member Ms Hina Pervez Butt informed the House that the PML-N-led Punjab Government had registered all 15,000 madrassas, including 532 existing in 'Gray Areas' of the province. Rana Sanaullah confirmed that as many as 1.1 million students were enrolled in madrassas in which around 0.4 million students are enjoying boarding facilities, while 1300 students belong to foreign countries.

February 8

AJK Police announced the arrest of three men suspected of facilitating a suicide attack on a Muharram procession in Mirpura village of Neelum Valley in Muzaffarabad in December 27, 2009. The arrests were made from three different places in Muzaffarabad in the evening of February 7. The men arrested have been identified as Malik Mohammad Ashfaq from Sarriyan District, Muhammad Khaqan Awan from Hattian Bala District and Umer Farooq Shah from Athmuqam District in Neelum Valley. The attack left at 15 parsons, including two Policemen, dead and more than 100 injured. ASP Asif Durrani said that the men were suspected of providing accommodation and transportation to the attackers.

Almost 248 Police officials who took part in 1992 and 1996 Karachi operations were killed however, so far only six killers of these cops have been convicted. A total of 378 accused were arrested. Challans submitted in 121 cases out of which in six cases killers have been convicted whereas a total of 55 accused acquitted and the remaining 60 are still under trial. Official statistics show that from 1995 till 2016, almost 1,488 Policemen were killed in the Karachi Range. Although, the most number of Police officials – 261 — were killed in 1995 yet otherwise 2012, 2013 and 2014 were the worst years for the Karachi Police with 123, 165 and 136 killings respectively.

The ongoing Rangers’ led operation appears to have been a blessing even for the Karachi Police as killings of Police officials in the city had drastically reduced in 2015 and 2016. In 2016, only 29 Policemen were killed whereas this figure was 67 in 2015. The official data shows that a total of 261 Policemen were killed in 1995 58 were murdered in 1996 74 in 1997 97 in 1998 59 in 1999 49 in 2000 58 in 2001 14 in 2002 19 in 2003 23 in 2004 24 in 2005 40 in 2006 51 in 2007 48 in 2008 41 in 2009 49 in 2010 53 in 2011 123 in 2012 165 in 2013 136 in 2014 67 in 2015 and 29 in 2016.

Outside Karachi in Sindh, Larkana appears to be the most dangerous place for Policemen from 2001 till 2016. Each year’s number of Policemen killed in Larkana District during the period (from 2001 till 2016) is 8 7 17 1 6 4 11 21 13 13 13 8 13 20 10 9 and 5 respectively. These figures show that the most difficult time for the Larkana Police has been from 2007 to 2014 — the period during which the killing of policemen remained high. Otherwise, in the Hyderabad District, the Police had a bad time really in 2014 when a total of 27 Police officials got killed. 

February 9

Six militants were killed in a shoot out with Police during a raid on a chicken farm off Superhighway near the Baqai Medical University in Gadap town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. SSP Malir Rao Anwar Ahmed said that the six militants belonged to AQIS and TTP, and were involved in targeting law enforcement personnel. One of the militant was also involved in the Peshawar Army Public School attack. An ID card was found from his pocket, but the investigators are trying to verify his identity as the card he was carrying may have been faked. Another militant Ibrahim Haydri had allegedly been wanted by Police for his involvement in grenade attacks and firing on various Police officials in different areas of Karachi. "Haydri and the other militants were responsible for the death of around 25 Police personnel," the Rao Anwar Ahmed alleged.

Five persons, including four children, were injured in a roadside bomb blast in Arang tehsil of Bajaur Agency in FATA. The bomb was detonated through a remote control device.

February 10

Two militants killed and three others injured when Army repulsed militant attack from Afghanistan on two Pakistan Army checkposts in the Ulai area of Baizai tehsil in Mohmand Agency of FATA in the night. The Army’s media wing, ISPR said that Pakistan Army effectively responded to the fire, rendering it ineffective. Soon after the incident, militants fled back to Afghanistan, ISPR added. The JuA faction of TTP stated that it lost two cadres while three others were injured after they launched an overnight attack on a Pakistani checkpost.

Iranian forces fired four mortar shells across the border into Balochistan's Panjgur District. Deputy Commissioner Panjgur Habibur Rehman claimed Iranian forces fired four mortar shells into Parom area 'without any justification and provocation'. "We have not received any report about any human loss", he added.

February 11

Provincial Home Minister Sarfraz Bugti stated that India was using Afghanistan’s soil to destabilise Balochistan. Speaking at a seminar at University of Karachi, Sarfraz Bugti said, Security Forces and the youth of Balochistan brought peace in the province, adding that rate of crime in Balochistan is much lower as compared to Karachi and Faisalabad. A handful (100-200) of miscreants are trying to sabotage CPEC, he added.

February 12

Two children were killed and another critically wounded in an accidental grenade explosion in Buner of Swat District in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The children of a shepherd family were playing when they found the hand grenade and accidentally set it off, local government official Zariful Maani. The two brothers, aged nine and 10, died, while their seven-year-old female cousin is in critical condition. 

An employee of Samaa TV was killed evening when unidentified assailants opened fire on a Samaa TV DSNG van at KDA Chowrangi near Dolmen Mall in North Nazimabad of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. An assistant cameraman, Taimur, received a bullet wound to the head and was rushed to the nearby Abbasi Shaheed Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. The media van was in the area to cover an earlier incident, a cracker attack on a Police vehicle, when it was attacked. “Our team members along with the DSNG had gone there to cover the cracker attack on the police vehicle when they came under attack,” said Samaa TV's Director News, Farhan Malik. Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Central, Muqaddas Haider said the same suspects might be involved in both the incidents and added the cracker attack on the police vehicle did not cause any damage. “It appears that the suspects attacked the Police mobile with a cracker to attract media's attention and when the Samaa team arrived, they chased and attacked it,” added Haider.

In an effort to promote its ideology and update supporters about its latest actions in the country, the TTP has brought out a high gloss, Vogue-style magazine. The first issue of ‘Mujjallah’ magazine was published in November 2016 and reportedly distributed in Pakistan sometime in December 2016. The inaugural issue had 56 pages. The second issue printed a couple of weeks ago is slicker and thicker and has more pages than the first one. The paper quality of the magazine is at par with that of Vogue, besides having fine printing quality. The cover carries bulletins of the banned outfit’s activities in Pakistan and also features reports on how to make bombs and other explosives. Some experts who have known about the operations of organisation like TTP stated that the magazine has been modeled after ISIS publications which were available in Arabic and Urdu among other languages.

While declining to be named, they said, the magazine is being printed in Afghanistan, most likely in Jalalabad, and allegedly distributed throughout Pakistan amongst hardcore followers and also has a limited circulation in Afghanistan. Judging from the kind of language used in the magazine, the articles and features were probably written by non-native Urdu speakers, possibly Arabic-speaking people. The articles have not been attributed to anyone. Since TTP has lost ground in Pakistan, the magazine is most likely an attempt to spread its propaganda.  It may also be an effort to defame the country, they added. To illustrate their point, they said that when TTP held a strong position in Pakistan it had never attempted to bring out such a magazine but now after it had lost ground such a publication was released.

The ISAF Commander General John Nicholson (Jr.) said TTP provides the core fighting group for the militant IS group as TTP militants in Orakzai Agency of FATA en masse joined the relatively new terrorist group. General John Nicholson (Jr.) appeared before the US Senate Armed Services Committee this week to brief American lawmakers on the current situation in Afghanistan. He told the panel that the IS, which in Afghanistan was called the Islam State Khorasan Province, comprised fighters mainly from existing militant groups in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Primarily, their membership had come from the TTP, which was a Pakistan-based opponent of the Pakistan regime, he said. The general said TTP militants in Orakzai Agency had, en masse, joined the IS-Khorasan and formed the initial group of fighters who then moved into Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province, spreading out to about 11 Districts initially. “So, the majority of the fighters in the IS right now came from the TTP and joined the banner of the IS,” he added.

Source:Compiled from news reports and are provisional.

 

 

 

 

 
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