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Pakistan Timeline - 2016



January 1

The CTD arrested a militant affiliated with Jundullah-Haji Aqakhel group, and identified as Abdul Aziz alias Aziz Rehman, from Orangi Town in Karachi, who was accused recruiting young men for the Islamic State (IS/ also known as Daesh) and had sent three militants to Syria. He was collecting funds for the IS in Karachi and Quetta (Balochistan).

The official revealed that the Aziz had confessed during initial investigation to having sent three trained young men to Syria. One of them, Jaffer, has been killed there, while the whereabouts of Hamza and Rasheed are not known.

CoAS General Raheel Sharif while addressing tribal elders of Gwadar, Talar and Turbat areas of Makran Division said that the nation would get rid of terrorism this year. “The new year will be the year when terrorism will end,” he said. He also said that the “elements involved in the bad practice of financial misappropriation” should also be dealt with strictly.

January 2

Two ‘criminals’, identified as Mam Dost (24) and Jehangir (23), were killed in a Police encounter within the Mawach Goth Police Station in Baldia Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

January 3

Four SF personnel injured in two separate bomb attacks in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Two soldiers suffered injuries when their convoy was damaged in a roadside bomb blast near the Peshawar-Islamabad Motorway Toll Plaza in Peshawar, the provincial capital of KP. SSP-Operation Dr Mian Saeed said that a remote-controlled IED weighing around four kilogrammes was used in the attack.

Two Constables, Muhammad Ali and Faqeer Muhammad, were injured when Police mobile van comes under grenade attack in Par Hoti Police Station area of Mardan District. The mobile was parked near a CNG station when unidentified motorcycle bourne assailants lobbed a hand grenade at it.

The Upper Dir District Police conducted 1,838 operations and arrested over 2,000 alleged criminals, including terrorists, during 2015. This was stated by District Police Officer Syed Israr Bacha on January 2 while briefing media persons about record of the Police to maintain law and order in the District. He said that the Police arrested 28 terrorists, 653 proclaimed offenders and 1,335 suspects in search operations in 2015. He said that they had also seized 103 kilogrammes of charas and 204.5 liters of wine during raids at different places.

The main accused in the May 13, 2105, Safoora carnage of Karachi, identified as Umer Kathio, was arrested in joint raid conducted by Police and Rangers. The raid was conducted on a lead from Saad Aziz, another accused who has been in Police custody. According to sources, Umer Kathio had formed a network of terrorists in 2011. His task was to facilitate the terrorists of the al Qaeda. The sources further said the he later joined the Islamic State (IS/ also known as Daesh) while his wife runs a network of Daesh in Sindh.

Prime Minister's Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said during an interview to Radio Pakistan that the Foreign Secretaries of India and Pakistan will meet on January 15, 2016, to draw up a roadmap for the Bilateral Comprehensive Dialogue for the next six months to carry forward the bilateral engagement and the Pakistan Government will focus on the revival of peace process in Afghanistan and the consolidation of the process of improvement of relations with India.

The dialogue will cover all issues, including Kashmir, Siachen and water, he said. Talking about the policy of a peaceful neighbourhood, he said it ultimately paid back as there is "visible improvement" in relations with India and Afghanistan.

January 4

Two Policemen were killed when unidentified armed assailants opened fire at a Police check post in Bibi Nanai area of Sariab Road in provincial capital Quetta. "Armed assailants opened fire at Sariab road," said a police official.

A special unit of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police foiled a terror plan by arresting six suspected militants in an intelligence-based operation in Bannu District. Based on prior intelligence, special Police unit Bannu raided an under-construction house in Pir Dil Khel Sorani area of Bannu where the armed militants were busy in terror-planning. The arrested militants were named as Shamsur Rehman, Abidullah, Anwar Kamal, Safdar Iqbal, Mansoor and Qudratullah.

Five gangsters were arrested by Rangers during a targeted raid in Lyari Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Weapons were also recovered from their possession. The Law Enforcement Agencies also raided Social Security Hospital and retrieved weapons hidden in the hospital premises.

Security Forces have established new check posts in areas of Bajaur Agency in FATA along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border to boost security and stop militants from entering through the porous boundary. While briefing the media, Bajaur Scouts Commandant Colonel Nair Zaman said these check posts have been set up in Mamond, Salarzai and other areas along the border. The step has been taken to boost security as militants in Afghanistan would enter Bajaur and attack locals, pro-Government elders and security forces. “We have also succeeded in finding militants’ weapons dump with the help of locals.”

January 5

A five kilogram of bomb with 2.5 kilogram of ball bearings and two gallons petrol along with a remote control device was found under the stairs of the Samsani overhead bridge on Canal Road in provincial capital Lahore, sometime after Federal Minister of Interior Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan drove through the area. Sadar Division SP Haroonur Rasheed said that the bomb had been placed to harm the Interior Minister who crossed the bridge on his way to Islamabad.

Special Police Unit foiled a terror bid and arrested three alleged terrorists having ties with a banned outfit during a raid at a hideout [of terrorists] on Muddi Road near Shaheedabad area of Dera Ismail Khan District. However, the name of the banned organisation has not yet been disclosed. Three kilograms of explosive along with two hand grenades, 25 feet Primacord, wire and 12 volts battery were also recovered from their possession. Those arrested were identified as Khawaja Mohammad, Sakhawat Khan and Asfandyar.

Sindh Police arrested two suspects involved in various cases, including an attack on an Express News DSNG van on January 17, 2014, which resulted in the death of three media workers. “The arrested men belong to a group of 10 people that have been active in Karachi since 2014 and were involved in various target killing cases and attacking media persons,” DIG West Feroz Shah said. “The group mainly operated from Orangi Town area of Karachi and consisted of accused Saqib, Naveed, Kashif, Imran, Sarfaraz, Javed Afridi, Qari Rasheed, Qari Mohsin, Rehan and Kamran,” he added. IG Sindh Police announced a prize money of PKR 1 million for the Police officials who carried out the raids to arrest them.

PM Nawaz Sharif assured his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi that Islamabad would not hesitate to take “prompt and decisive action” if the involvement of Pakistan-based elements in the attack on an Indian airbase in Pathankot was proved beyond doubt. “PM Nawaz Sharif assured PM Modi that his Government would take prompt and decisive action against the terrorists,” the Indian Prime Minister’s office said in a press statement after Sharif called Modi from Colombo. “Our (Pakistan) government is working on the leads and information provided by the Indian government. We would like to investigate the matter,” PM Sharif said.

During the telephonic conversation, PM Modi called for “firm and immediate action” against those involved in the Pathankot strike. “Specific and actionable information in this regard has been provided to Pakistan,” Modi was quoted by the Indian External Affairs Ministry.

The number of deaths in terrorist attacks declined by 48 percent in 2015 compared to 2014, said an annual report issued by PIPS. According to the report, 625 terrorist attacks were witnessed in the country in which at least 1,069 people lost their lives, while 1,443 people sustained injuries.  The report said deaths in sectarian violence in 2015 surged by 7 percent with 272 people killed as compared to 225 such killings in year 2014. A total f 630 civilians, 318 personnel of security and law enforcement agencies and 121 militants were killed in year 2015, the report added.

January 6

Five TTP militants were killed in an exchange of fire during Police encounter at a graveyard in Machar Colony area of Sohrab Goth in Gadap Town of provincial capital Karachi. SSP Rao Anwar said, "The militants had set up a hideout in the graveyard and on police's arrival, they opened fire."  Two of the attackers were identified as Naeem and Hafeezullah, while identities of the other have not asceratined thus far. Police also claimed to have recovered 2.5 kilograms of explosive material and other arms and ammunition from the hideout.

Four TTP militants, identified as Hanif alias 'Nadeem Kala', Ashraf Ali alias 'Bhaloo', Rehmat Shah and Zahid Hussain, were arrested during a Police operation in Defence Housing Authority-Phase 1 neighbourhood. Karachi-South DIG Dr Jamil Ahmed said that the Police recovered a shopping bag containing ball bearings, suicide jackets and four kilograms of explosive material. They also recovered bomb-making material and four pistols from their possession

Sindh Rangers and CTD claimed to have arrested a close aide of slain TTP leader, Baitullah Mehsud, in a joint raid carried out in Kotri area of Jamshoro District. AIG CTD Sanaullah Abbasi said the terrorist identified as Meherban, son of Badshah Khan, was a close confidante of Mehsud and was placed in the Red-Book.

Unidentified militants abducted six locals while they on their way to Gandoi area of Sui tehsil in Dera Bugti District. No group has claimed responsibility for abduction.

SFs arrested four TTP militants during a raid in Gawal Ismailzai area of Zhob District. The spokesman for the FC Khan Wasey said that weapons were also recovered from their possession. Wasay alleged the weapons were being smuggled into interior Balochistan for use in subversive activities.

The FC arrested three suspects from Mangochar area of Kalat District. Wasey said that that weapons and explosives were also recovered from their possession.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said that Pakistan has dismantled terrorists’ network and its war against terror has entered in the final phase. Speaking to the Sri Lankan businessman and journalists, Nawaz Sharif once again expressed resolve to end energy crisis in the country by 2017. Inviting the Sri Lankan business community to invest in Pakistan, PM Nawaz said, CPEC and TAPI projects would change the fate of the region. Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan offers attractive investment regime to the investors and Sri Lanka could take full benefit from it. He said, “We will also encourage our investors to invest in Sri Lanka.” The Premier went on to say that Pakistan desires good economic relations with Sri Lanka.

The SBP has frozen bank accounts of over PKR one billion as they were allegedly being used for financing terrorism. This was disclosed by Governor SBP, Ashraf Wathra and his team at a press conference on January 6. Wathra said 121 bank accounts of more than PKR one billion were frozen over evidence of being used for funding terrorist activities in the light of a resolution of UNSC.

In order to choke the funding of terrorists, he stressed the need for making the NACTA functional besides enhancement of cooperation between federation and provinces. He said effective measures were being adopted for putting tabs of transfer of money through ‘Hundi’. The SBP Governor further said that about 20 to 30 percent imports were taking place without the letter of credit (LC). “We are binding such importers to identify their sources of funding,” he added.

Federal Government is considering new policy measures to make the NACTA effective in tracking proscribed organisations and individuals amid criticism over slow implementation of the NAP. Fresh recommendations have been made for choking terrorism financing and making NACTA more effective, said SBP Governor Ashraf Wathra. He was responding to questions regarding the anti-terrorism financing regime after attending a meeting. Finance Minister Ishaq Dar chaired the meeting of the subcommittee on choking terror financing constituted under the Prime Minister’s NAP implementation committee.

The Schools Education Department has issued directives to District Education officers to put up material discussing anti-terrorism efforts, tolerance and co-existence in all schools of the Province. The material was created by the Punjab Textbook and Curriculum Board and contains topics ranging from definition of terrorism to the importance of tolerance in the society. The material is in Urdu. The document lists external conspiracies, anti-state actors, lack of education, misinterpretation of religious texts, sectarianism, provincialism, racial discrimination, poverty and Indian infiltration as reasons for terrorism. The document classifies forms of terrorism into suicide attacks, bombings and shooting and kidnapping of citizens.

January 7

Four tribesmen, including a tribal elder Malik Wali Khan Mehsud, were shot dead by unidentified militants in Shaktoi area of Ladha tehsil in SWA of FATA. Two other tribesmen were identified as Malik Akbar Khan Mehsud and Jawad Mehsud. The third remained unidentified.  No outfit claimed responsibility for the attack, but residents claimed that commander Said Khan alias Sajna, who is affiliated TTP, had warned the IDPs a few days ago not to return to their homes, otherwise they themselves would be responsible for consequences.

Two soldiers were injured in a roadside blast at Shaheedano Dand in Kurram Agency.

The Sindh Police’s CTD claimed to have recovered 50 kilograms of explosives, two Kalashnikovs, two rifles, eight grenades, and four pistols, in a raid in the Manghopir area of Gadap Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. In a statement, the CTD said that a TTP terrorist, Meharban Badshah, who had been arrested in Hyderabad District, had disclosed the storage location.

Pakistan Customs Intelligence recovered 22,000 kilograms of explosive materials from a container that had been stored at the Karachi Port since November 20, 2015. A Customs spokesman said the container (CBHU-8570130) came to Karachi from China and had been stored at the port for over a month now. It was meant to be shipped upcountry but, according to the official, was not sent as the Peshawar Customs Intelligence had, some time back, caught two containers which had arrived at the Karachi Port along with this one and found explosives in them.

KP's SPU claimed to have arrested three suspects for campaigning for proscribed militant organisations in Dir Colony of provincial capital Peshawar. The arrested suspects, identified as Raheemullah, Sibghatullah and Sajjad, were found distributing pamphlets in support of banned militant’s outfits. However, the SPU did not specify the name of the outfit.

The Islamic State (IS/ also known as Daesh) militants broadcast four interviews of TI militants abducted by them in Afghanistan on its FM radio channel The Voice of Khilafat. Those interviewed included Pakistanis who said they were members of the group. They said they were captured by the IS. The other men who were in the IS custody said in the interview that they were Afghan Taliban aligned to the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.

January 8

At least 38 terrorists were killed and five others were injured in fresh air strikes on militant hideouts in Meezar and Sherani areas along the Afghanistan border in NWA of FATA. A large number of local and foreign militants were killed in air strikes, said ISPR. Those killed include 15 militants of Uzbek origin associated with Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, the officials said. Five hideouts and three explosive-laden vehicles were also destroyed in the air strikes, the officials added.

Pro-Government Tribal Chief Wali Jan Mehsud escaped a roadside bomb blast near Moley Khan Sarai in SWA. Security Forces said that Mehsud was on way to Shahur High School when a remote-controlled bomb went off at a roadside near Moley Khan Sarai. The blast slightly damaged the car of Mehsud.

Two Police personnel, Constable Mushtaq and constable Wajid, were shot dead by unidentified assailants outside a mosque in Multani Mohala of Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan. The assailants managed to flee the scene of crime.

Unidentified assailants shot dead a senior Afghan Taliban ‘commander’, Maulvi Muhammad Alam, in Kuchlak area of Quetta. Maulvi Muhammad Alam, loyal commander to Taliban supremo Mullah Akhtar Mansoor, was shot dead, Taliban leaders said on the condition of anonymity, as they were not authorised to speak to the media. “I can confirm that Maulvi Muhammad Alam has been killed.

The United States said that Pakistan knows well the threat of terrorism and its Government has vowed that they are not going to discriminate between terrorist groups as part of its counterterrorism operations. US State Department Spokesman John Kirby, in a media briefing said, “Pakistan itself has condemned Pathankot air base attack and made clear that they are committed to investigate it. US, obviously, would like to see it investigated too as completely and as thoroughly as possible.” Kirby said terrorism is a regional challenge that requires real regional solutions, and the US wants Pakistan to be a part of those solutions.

The US State Department said that it was up to the Pakistan Government to determine how long it would take to investigate the attack on the Pathankot airbase following information provided by India. The spokesman John Kirby said Pakistan has condemned the attack and has made clear its commitment to investigate it. “It’s not for us to ascribe a timeline to somebody else’s investigation,” spokesman John Kirby said in response to a question at a regular briefing.

January 9

At least five suspected militants were killed in a US drone strike carried out in Mangroti area in North Waziristan Agency of FATA. This was the second US drone strike of the day in the Pakistan-Afghanistan border region.

Two Coast Guard personnel were killed and three others were wounded when their vehicle hit a landmine in Kaldan area of Jewni tehsil in Gwadar District.

SFS claimed to have foiled a major bid of terrorism by seizing weapons and arresting a suspected militant from Dera Murad Jamali area of Naseerabad District.

SFs launched a search operation in various parts of provincial capital Quetta, including Kasi Road, Balochi street, and arrested 25 suspects. “25 suspects were arrested from various parts of Quetta,” said an unnamed police official.

On a tip-off, Police conducted a raid at the Kalakot area in Lyari Town of Karachi and arrested two alleged target killers whose identity was not disclosed. The Police also claimed to have recovered weapons from their possession.

In a bid to root out extremism and maintain peace under the NAP, the Gilgit-Baltistan Government during a high level meeting decided to audit financial matters of seminaries operating in the region. An unnamed Government official, “There are 162 registered madrassas in the region which have been receiving financial assistance from various sources over the years,”  adding, “Accounts of these seminaries will be audited to make sure funding isn’t spent on terrorist activities.”

Another unnamed official said that security agencies have listed at least 50 clerics as a “threat to the region’s peace”. “The government is thinking of listing those clerics under schedule 4 [of the anti-terrorism act].” In addition, the Government has also decided to issue notices to clerics involved in hate speech.   “If these clerics don’t refrain from making such speeches, they would be dealt with according to the NAP,” said the official.

January 10

A man, identified as Umair Khan (25), was shot dead by unidentified armed assailants in Qasba Colony of SITE Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

Seven Afghan nationals were abducted and two others were injured in an exchange of fire with kidnappers in Talab area of Taftan in Chagai District. Taftan Assistant Commissioner Murad Kasi said, “It is not known who was behind the kidnapping of the Afghan nationals.”  

January 11

The shop owner of an officially sanctioned wine shop, identified as Moti Ram, was injured when unidentified militants lobbed a hand grenade at the shop located on Muneer Mengal Road in provincial capital Quetta.

Frontier Corps on the basis of intelligence reports arrested a TTP militant during a raid in Chanjan area of Killa Saifullah District.

The ATC allowed CTD to detain an al Qaeda suspect, identified as Abdur Raqeeb, for 30 days for questioning. The department told the judge that they have credible information about suspect that he is involved in providing financial assistance to terrorists and in other offences came within the ambit of ATA. Raqeeb, alleged to be Hyderabad's Ameer of al Qaeda, was picked up in a targeted operation in PIB colony of Gulshan Town on January 8, 2016.

Police registered a terrorism case against leaders of the Tanzeemat-e-Ahle Sunnat, an alliance of several religious parties of the Barelvi school of thought, for allegedly inciting people to violence against the state and its institutions by raising the case of Malik Mumtaz Qadri, the self-confessed and convicted killer of Punjab Governor Salman Taseer, during a rally in Nishtar Park located in Soldier Bazar of Jamshed Town on January 10, 2016. At the January 10 event, speakers demanded a fresh trial of Mumtaz Qadri by the Federal Shariat Court, termed the death sentence handed down to him ‘un-Islamic’ and warned that they could go to any extent if the Government failed to change its attitude.

As many as ten oil tankers carrying fuel supplies to NATO forces in Afghanistan reached Torkham border in Khyber Agency of FATA amid tight security, resuming the service over a year after its suspension. Officials at Torkham while requesting anonymity said the tankers with no apparent NATO related marking on them reached the border at around midday and were later parked near the crossing point for necessary checking. 

DG Rangers of the Sindh Rangers Major General Bilal Akbar during a meeting with traders said that the targeted operation in Karachi will continue as per the instructions of the heads of the armed forces and the Federal Government. “Despite the ongoing pushing and shoving, I have been clearly instructed by the heads to go on with the operation,” said Major General Bilal Akbar.

“The future of Karachi operation is bright and it will continue until it reaches its logical conclusion,” a KCCI press release stated. Siraj Kassam Teli, the chairman of Businessmen Group and a former KCCI President, said the business community would support the Rangers efforts. “The business community hopes the Government and Rangers will continue working to restore peace in Karachi,” he added.

January 12

A labourer was killed when unidentified militants opened fire at a FWO Camp in Hoshap area of Turbat District.

Unidentified militants opened fire at a FWO vehicle that was carrying officials, injuring at least five personnel in Turbat District.

Two death row convicts were hanged till death in Toba Tek Singh and Bahawalpur jails early on Tuesday. A death convict, Muhammad Sardar, was hanged till death in the District Jail Toba Tek Singh. He was accused of killing one Amanullah in 1993.

Another convict, identified as Rasheed Ahmad, was hanged till death in the New Central Jail in Bahawalpur District. He was accused of murdering a man in 2004.

Law enforcement agencies claimed to have arrested seven LeJ suspect allegedly involved in attacks on different media houses during a raid in Samanabad area  of provincial capital Lahore. Quoting intelligence sources, some television news channels reported that prime suspects Saifullah and Waheed and their five accomplices were arrested. Arms and ammunition, maps of some media houses and jihadi literature were recovered from their possession.

Special Police unit arrested an Afghan terrorist, Hamidullah alias Hamzaullah, involved in the attack on Pishtakhara Police Station van in Academy town on September 11, 2015, during a raid at Board bazaar bus stop in Peshawar, the provincial capital of KP. Police constable Ajmal Khan was killed, while ASI Jamal Shah, head constable Tahir and constable Shehzad had received injuries.

Observing that "instability will continue for decades" in many parts of the world including Afghanistan and Pakistan, US President Barack Obama said both al Qaida and ISIS pose a direct threat to the US during his final State of the Union Address to the Congress. "Both al-Qaida and now ISIL pose a direct threat to our people, because in today's world, even a handful of terrorists who place no value on human life, including their own, can do a lot of damage," Obama said.

January 13

At least 15 people, among them 13 Police personnel, a FC soldier and a civilian, were killed while 25 others were injured when suicide bomber blew himself up near a Government health centre in Satellite Town area of Quetta. Earlier, it was reported that 14 persons were killed in the attack. TTP and JuI claimed responsibility for the attack. TTP spokesman Muhammad Khurasani sent an email to journalists, claiming responsibility of the suicide attack. But Azam Tariq, a spokesman for the JuI, made a similar claim and said the attack had been carried out by his group to avenge the act of torturing the people in custody. 

An employee of ARY TV channel was injured when unidentified militants hurled hand grenades and opened indiscriminate fire at the office in Islamabad. The attackers, before fleeing from the scene, left pamphlets which said Daesh (also known as Islamic State/IS) claims responsibility for the attack.

Assistant Sub-Inspector, Mohammed Akram, along with his eight accomplices, was arrested for their alleged involvement in kidnappings-for-ransom, during a raid in Gharibabad area of Malir Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. The officials added that the gang had been active for the past one month. They used to kidnap people by posing themselves as officers of the CTD of Police, said Karachi-West DIG Feroze Shah. The paramilitary force also seized the police van used for kidnapping people, he added.

The JeM ‘Chief’ Maulana Masood Azhar, his brother Mufti Abdul Rauf and close aides were taken into protective custody in connection with the January 2, 2016 attack on Pathankot airbase in Indian Punjab. They were all shifted to an undisclosed location. The sources further said that the concerned authorities were interrogating them over the armed attack on Pathankot airbase. Prime Minister’s office said in a statement that the Government has made "considerable progress" in investigating the attack. "Based on the initial investigations in Pakistan, and the information provided, several individuals belonging to Jaish-e-Mohammad have been apprehended," the office of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said.

“We will keep them (Azhar and brothers) for as long as we need to carry out our investigation over India’s claims about the attack. We are resolved to take this investigation to its conclusion,” said an unnamed senior intelligence official. Another senior Government official close to the investigation said that Azhar, who has been placed under house arrest in the past but never prosecuted, would be prosecuted this time if evidence connected him to the attack on the Pathankot air base.

Three suspects, including a student of a private university, were arrested by LEAs in connection with the Pathankot airbase attack. According to Intelligence Agencies, a student of the Lahore University of Management Sciences, Usman Sarwar of Arifwala tehsil of Pakpattan District Saad Mughal of Sahiwal District and Kashif of Karachi (Sindh) were arrested in connection with the Pathankot incident. Indian authorities had shared five mobile phone numbers with Pakistan in connection with investigation into the attack. Acting on the leads, the authorities took the three students into custody because the numbers provided by India had been issued in their names.

January 14

SFs claimed to have killed at least three militants during a search operation in Sami and Tabjan areas of Kech District. A spokesman for the FC Khan Waey said that the militants were allegedly involved in attacks at the FWO. Weapons and ammunition were also seized by the SFs.

FC personnel also foiled major terror bid by defusing three IED in Solani area of Kech District. The FC spokesman said that the militants had planted the IEDs to target SFs and FWO workers in the area.

The CTD sealed a mosque-cum-seminary run by JeM and detained 14 JeM cadres from Mundeyki Goraya village in Sialkot District. An unnamed senior official said that a contingent of CTD and Police raided and sealed Jamia Masjid and Madrassah Al-Noor.

The US declared Islamic State (IS/ also known as Daesh) Afghanistan-Pakistan wing a FTO. “The US Department of State has announced the designation of ISIL-K as a FTO under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act”, says a statement issued in Washington. The Department of State took this action in consultation with the Departments of Justice and the Treasury, the statement added. The group, known as Islamic State Khorasan or ISIL-K, announced its formation on Jan 10, 2015 and is composed primarily of former members of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan and the Afghan Taliban.

US Under-Secretary of State for Civilian Security Sarah Sewall during a seminar in New Delhi urged Pakistan to take the fight to all terrorist outfits working along its borders, without any exception. “We will continue to work with the government of Pakistan to take the fight to all terrorist networks in the border region and do everything in their power to help India achieve justice for the Mumbai attacks,” she said in her speech, which the State Department also released in Washington. “That is what partners do — we help each other overcome shared struggles and face hard truths,” said the US official.

January 15

Four persons were killed and many were wounded in separate incidents of firing in different parts of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. The firing incidents took place in Korangi crossing and Qasba Colony resulting in death of three persons. Another three men were shot and injured in Lyari, Maripur and Shershah.

Pakistan Rangers killed a suspected gangster, identified as Nasir Wachani, in an ‘encounter’ in Lyari area of Karachi. Nasir Wachani was ‘very close’ to Uzair Baloch, as he looked after his ‘financial and land affairs’.

The CTD officials said that three suspects allegedly involved in an attack on a constable were apprehended during a raid on Nishtar Road. Two of the three suspects were identified as Aaqib Murgi and Qasim Baji. The third accused was yet to be identified. According to CTD, they used to collect extortion from traders.

Caught in Iran while travelling illegally to Syria to join the militant Islamic State group before being repatriated to Pakistan, two youngsters have turned away from ‘armed struggle’ after being ‘rehabilitated’ with the support of their families and security administration, officials said. Although still under surveillance, the men in their early 20s have no more militant tendencies according to the psychiatrists who evaluated their condition, said official in charge of the CTD Raja Umer Khattab. The two men belonging to the middle and upper middle class families of Karachi were handed over to the FIA by the Iranian authorities before being given into the custody of the Quetta Police.

During question hour in the Senate, the Government disclosed that five unidentified persons had been arrested in Sindh for allegedly financing terrorism, but failed to explain when they had been taken into custody or if their cases were under investigation or would be tried in court. This was revealed in a written reply to a question regarding the number of people arrested under the NAP on charges of financing terrorism. According to Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar, five people had been arrested in Sindh, four in KP and 28 in Gilgit-Baltistan on these charges. No arrests have been made on this account in Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Federally Administered Tribal Areas, Islamabad and Balochistan. It was also revealed that while cases of those arrested in GB and KP were being heard in the ATCs, there was no mention of the status of the cases from Sindh.

Unidentified militants attacked the residence of an Afghan consulate official in cantonment area of Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Consulate official Humayun Yousafzai is unhurt. Initial investigation revealed a sub-machine gun was used to fire at the house and 29 bullet casings have been recovered from the site of the attack. Photos from the crime scene show the boundary wall of the house marred with bullets. A FIR has been registered against unidentified individuals and an investigation is under way. No one has claimed responsibility for the attack as yet.

The CTD arrested a key wanted terrorist, identified as Raees Khan, during a raid in Chakora area of Lower Dir District. CTD conducted a raid on a tip-off on a hideout and recovered hand grenades, pistol along with rounds from his possession.

A parked vehicle was damaged in a blast in Pir Koh area of Dera Bugti District in Balochistan. According to Levies sources, Unidentified militants had planted improvised explosive devices in a vehicle and had parked it near a house that went off. A vehicle was damaged in the blast while no loss of life was reported.

Punjab CTD conducted a raid on a Madrassah run by JeM in Razaabad of Faisalabad city in the Punjab Province and arrested eight JeM militants. The arrestees were shifted to an undisclosed location for interrogation. Among those taken into custody include JeM Regional Chief Muhammad Hassan Alias Abu Jandal whereas the identification of the others could not be confirmed so far.

The Government shut down several religious schools run by the JeM militant group accused of masterminding the attack on Pathankot air base in India, Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah said. The crackdown in Punjab, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s power base and the headquarters of JeM, follows the arrest this week of several members of the militant group, including its leader, Maulana Masood Azhar, a hardliner and long-time foe of India. The Government has said it is clamping down on Azhar’s group while it investigates Indian assertions that the January 2 attack on the Pathankot air base was the work of the Pakistan-based militants.

At least 79 militants, including three commanders, given up their armed struggle against the state after a successful operation carried out by Security Forces in Miranshah of NWA in FATA.

Ministry of States and Frontier Regions has facilitated the return of 447,544 registered families of IDP, NADRA report said. NADRA has so far verified 447,544 IDPs, out of which 265,214 have returned, while 182,330 remain. As per agency-wise updates till January 2, in Khyber Agency 91,689 IDPs were verified by NADRA, of which 73,767 returned, and 17,922 remain, in NWA 104,002 IDPs have been verified of which 33,725 returned and 70,277 remain, while in SWA the number of NADRA-verified IDPs is 71,124, of which 13,997 have returned and 57,127 remain.

Similarly, NADRA has verified 35,823 IDPs of Orakzai Agency, of which the number of registered returnees was 16,102 and 19,721 remain. For Kurram Agency the number of NADRA-verified IDPs was 33,024 of which 16,117 registered have returned and 16,907 remain. For Frontier Region Tank 2,228 have been verified by NADRA, with 1,852 registered returnees. The data further revealed that for Bajaur the number of NADRA verified IDPs was 72,895 and all of them were returned while for Mohmand the number of NADRA verified IDPs was 36,759 and all of them were returned to their respective agency. The long-awaited return of TDPs of FATA was initiated in March 2015 and till date around 90,000 NADRA-verified families have been processed with cellular companies for provision of Transport Grant at the rate of Rs 10,000 and Return Cash Grant at the rate of Rs 25,000 per family.

January 16

At least nine children were injured in hand grenade attack in Chakiwara area of Lyari Town in Karachi of Sindh. The police have launched a search operation in the area after the attack but no significant development has been reported.

Sindh Rangers Director General Major General Bilal Akbar while talking to a delegation of Pakhtun Jirga led by ANP Senator Shahi Syed pledged to take the ongoing operation in the city to a logical end. He said the indiscriminate operation, that has gained public support due to its positive results, would be taken to its logical end.

Four constables were injured when suspected militants lobbed a hand-grenade into a Police van on the Swabi-Mardan Road in Dagai area of Swabi District. The injured constables were identified as Arshad Ali, Imtiaz Ahmad, Aftab and Mohammad Ishaq.

Police arrested a terrorist along with explosive and ammunitions in Mardan District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province. On a tip-off, Police conducted a raid at a hideout in Tarnab Chowk Charsadda and arrested the suspected terrorist identified as Yarmat Shah who hailed from Khyber Agency. Police said that the terrorist was a commander of a banned terrorist outfit. The suspect was shifted to undisclosed location for further investigation.

January 17

Three bullet-riddled dead bodies were recovered from Gorkop area of Kech District. The dead bodies were identified as those of Noshad alias Nodo, Abdul Ghani and Maqsood. "All victims received multiple bullet wounds," Levies sources said.

SFs foiled a major terror bid on a roadside in Sui tehsil of Dera Bugti District, defusing an IED weighing around 17 kilogram. Khan Wasey, spokesman for the Frontier Corps said, "Miscreants wanted to target security forces through the IED."

SFs arrested three TTP militants from Nassai area of Qilla Saifullah District.

SFs arrested a TTP militant during a raid in Karbala village of Pishin District.

A brother of a local leader of the PML-N, identified as Mir Ishtiaq Baloch alias Mulla Pappu (35), was shot dead on Ahmed Shah Bukhari Road in Baghdadi area of Lyari Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh ahead of a planned ‘peace rally’. A passerby was also shot at and wounded in the attack. The victim had also contested the recent local government election on a Union Council chairman seat in Lyari. “It appeared to be a targeted killing incident,” said City SSP Fida Husain. Baghdadi SHO Rao Dilshad said that the victim was the younger brother of PML-N leader Mir Ashfaq Baloch.

A man, identified as Shan (25), was shot dead outside his residence near Old Golimar area of Lyari Town.

Three JeM cadres, who were among the 31 arrested suspects as part of a crackdown on the outfit in the aftermath of the January 2, 2016, Pathankot terror attack, were charged in an Anti-Terrorism Court of Sialkot District for possessing jihadi literature.  The three suspects, however, were not charged in connection with the Pathankot attack and instead were charged for possessing jihadi literature.

Graffiti welcoming Islamic State (IS/ also known as Daesh) was seen in at least two places in Gilgit District, stirring panic among locals and law-enforcement agencies. “At least two walls were painted with slogans welcoming IS in Gilgit,” a resident said, a day after the graffiti was found spray-painted in Amphari area of Gilgit. “Nobody knows who did this; people saw it in the morning and reported to the Police,” said the local.

The wall-chalking was removed by authorities immediately after it came to their notice, but finding such graffiti in Gilgit perturbed residents who believed it could be the work of someone aiming to create unrest in the region.  The graffiti also gave authorities in the region a reason to scramble in worry. “This is to create panic in the region, [or so] it seems to be at least for now,” an unnamed security official said.

JeM rejected claims that its leader Maulana Masood Azhar has been arrested for his alleged role in the January 2, 2o16, terror strike on the Pathankot airbase in India. “Disbelievers and hypocrites across the world are celebrating our arrest,” a statement in Urdu said, “but the arrest never happened.” “Even if they happen, what difference will it make? No difference, except one. Allah willing, there will be more enthusiasm and excitement among people of the faith, and the work of jihad will gather more strength and energy,” said the statement, posted on a Facebook community used by the JeM to communicate with media and followers.

“Those taking the Mujahideen as helpless and weak are greatly mistaken. You made the children of the martyr Afzal Guru cry, and since then, you have been crying, screaming and shrieking everyday,” it stated.  In its statement, the Jaish also lashed out at Pakistan’s government “which is friends with (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi, (former Deputy Prime Minister Lal Krishna) Advani, and (former Prime Minister Atal Bihari) Vajpayee”. “We will settle all scores… We are not polytheists, who were born on the railway tracks, but the followers of Muhammad the Arab and the enlightened ones of Medina, suffused with the unity of Allah and intoxicated by the desire for martyrdom,” the Jaish said.

January 18

Six FC personnel were killed and one was injured in an IED blast near FC’s Margat Checkpoint in provincial capital Quetta. No outfit claimed responsibility for the attack.

An ATC in Quetta acquitted former President General (retired) Pervez Musharraf in the case of the murder of JWP leader Nawab Akbar Bugti who was killed on August 26, 2006 in a military operation in Dera Bugti District. The court also acquitted former Federal Home Minister Aftab Khan Sherpao, and former Provincial Home Minister Shoaib Nosherwani. During the hearing, the court also rejected the request by Nawabzada Jamil Akbar Bugti, son of Akbar Bugti, to order exhumation of his father’s body to ensure the body buried in Dera Bugti was that of his late father.

Pakistan's Permanent Representative to the US Maleeha Lodhi in a letter to the UN Security Council (UNSC) President Elbio Rosselli expressed confidence that the UNSC will deliver on its pledge to hold a plebiscite in Kashmir. The letter said that it is a matter of the determination of the Kashmiris' future.

The Sindh Government announced that it would issue uniform Friday sermons to mosques to curb extremism and promote sectarian harmony in the province. Abdul Qayyum Soomro, the Adviser to the Sindh Chief Minister on Religious Affairs, said that the Government would issue Friday sermons to mosques across the Province. “One of our key objectives is to promote sectarian harmony,” Soomro said. “The Sindh Government has been planning to legislate it and a bill on the issue will soon be presented in the Provincial Assembly,” he added.

However, religious leaders belonging to different schools of thought said the government’s decision was impractical.  Mufti Muhammad Naeem, the principal of the Jamia Binoria International, a key Deobandi seminary in Karachi, wondered how the decision would work.  He said that Government had not taken religious leaders into confidence while making the decision. “These are only suggestions without practical steps which are not enough to curb sectarianism and will only create more confusion among the masses,“ Naeem said, adding, “We don’t know how the government will enforce it. It hasn’t explained it yet.”

Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz told the Upper House of Parliament that the US policies were responsible for instability in South Asia and urged the Obama administration to analyse its role and that of its allies in the region. Winding up discussion on an adjournment motion moved by Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed about US President Barack Obama’s remarks that instability will continue for decades in Pakistan, Aziz said: “Pakistan’s answer to instability is the strengthening democracy in the country.” He said that “the US created ‘holy warriors’ in our tribal areas during Afghan Jihad and then left them as soon as the war was over, a factor which contributed to decades of instability in Pakistan and the region.”

About any external threats to the country’s stability, the adviser said that since 2013, Pakistan was pursuing a policy of non-interference and was not taking part in other nations’ wars. “We have decided that we are not going to indulge in fighting other countries’ wars now, and this policy is being pursued vigorously by the government,” Aziz said, adding that “Pakistan has also taken a strong stance against terrorism.

January 19

Twelve persons, including a journalist, were killed while 39 others sustained injuries when a suicide bomber targeted the tribal Khassadar force in the Karkhano Market of Khyber Agency in FATA. The incident occurred hardly 30 metres from the Karkhano checkpost, the entry-point to Peshawar from Khyber Agency. The security sources said the bomber parked his motorbike and walked towards the Line Officer Nawab Shah of the Khassadar Force and his Khassadar Force and his guards. “The bomber detonated his explosives vest. The car of the Line Officer and another vehicle caught fire while the roof of a nearby shop caved in after the blast,” said an official. Those killed in the blast included Line Officer Nawab Shah and Mehboob Shah Afridi, president of the Tribal Union of Journalists, Khyber Agency chapter, who was talking to him at the time of explosion. Others who lost their lives were Gul Sahib, Raziq Khan and Waris Khan, all members of the Khassadar force, and civilians Taimur Khan, Mubarak Shah, Malik Khan, Mohammadullah, Ashfaq Khan and the wife of one Shoaib. A child was also among the dead. Meanwhile, the TTP claimed responsibility for the attack.

The Rangers, after being tipped off about the presence of terrorists at Super Highway and Northern Bypass areas of Karachi, conducted a raid at a hideout and in the ensuing shootout shot at and injured three terrorists who later succumbed to their injuries. They were identified as Shamsher Khan, Ataullah alias Daud Pathan and Zaheer alias Zafeer Pathan.  Ranger's spokesperson said that the terrorists were members of a banned outfit and involved in target killing, extortion, rape, robbery, and kidnapping-for-ransom cases. The terrorists had killed Policemen and were also involved in bomb attacks on Rangers. The Rangers recovered weapons from the hideout.

Two gangsters of the Baba Ladla (Rauf Nazim) group, identified as Adil alias Rind alias Salman and Moeed, were shot dead in an encounter in Gul Muhammad Lane of Lyari Town. A Rangers soldier also suffered injuries. The two gangsters were. The spokespersons said the two men were involved in many murder, kidnapping-for-ransom and extortion cases. Weapons and ammunition were found at their hideout.

The CTD AEC detained 10 suspected terrorists affiliated with a banned outfit in Mohammed Khan Colony of Manghopir area in Gadap Town. A Police constable, identified as Kashif, was injured in the shootout. They were found in possession of a vehicle-based Improvised Explosive Device. Arms and ammunition, including bomb, repeater rifles, and pistols were recovered from the hideout.

Rangers arrested a suspected terrorist during a raid in Gulshan-e-Hadeed area of Bin Qasim Town.

Another suspect was arrested during a raid in Frontier Colony area of SITE Town.

Rangers claimed to have detained two suspects during separate raids in the Defence Housing Authority area who were allegedly involved in providing arms to ‘separatists’. The suspects were detained. The paramilitary force also seized weapons from their possession. According to the Rangers spokesperson, the two suspects were involved in providing weapons to ‘defunct separatist outfit’. However, he did not name the organisation and the held suspects.

Pakistan is considering a ban on FIF, a charity run by LeT founder and JuD chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed. "Officials said the Government is likely to ban FIF. The Federal Ministry of Interior, these officials said, had started serious consultations with all the stakeholders before banning FIF and a final decision would be taken in next few days".

A former US Navy SEAL kept an unauthorised photo of Osama bin Laden's corpse on a computer that he turned over to investigators. The discovery came after Matthew Bissonnette, who shot Osama in the infamous 2011 raid on the al Qaeda leader's compound in Pakistan, gave investigators a copy of his hard drive. He had been under investigation for allegedly revealing classified information in his book about the incident, "No Easy Day". Bissonnette gave investigators his hard drive as part of a deal to avoid prosecution over the material, two people familiar with the deal told The Intercept.

January 20

The TTP militants stormed the Bacha Khan University in Charsadda District of KP, killing at least 21 persons and causing injuries to 35 others. Victims included 17 students, two gardeners, a caretaker and a professor, adds BBC. Eyewitnesses said the four attackers broke into the university from the back by using the sugarcane fields as a cover. They cut the barbed-wire that fenced the university perimeter and then shot dead a security guard. The militants made it to the hostels and other buildings amid thick fog and began killing people randomly. “The police, army personnel and security guards on duty responded promptly to engage the attackers. However, the terrorists kept hiding and hurling grenades while taking advantage of the thick fog,” DIG, Mardan Range, Mohammad Saeed Wazir, who led the operation said. “Our cops fought bravely to shoot dead all the four attackers one by one. They were wearing suicide jackets but none of them could succeed in blowing himself up,” DIG Police Saeed Wazir maintained.

The mastermind of the December 16, 2014, APS Peshawar attack, Khalifa Umar Mansoor alias Aurangzeb, of the TTP Geedar faction has claimed the attack through a post on his Facebook page, adding that four attackers were sent to the university. However, the ‘central spokesperson’ Muhammad Khorasani denied any involvement in the attack. Refuting Khalifa Umar Mansoor’s claims, Khorasani in an email sent to media men said, “The TTP and its amir Maulana Fazalullah have nothing to do with the attack.” “We consider these youth studying in non-military educational institutes as our future, they are Muslims and their protection is our responsibility,” he stated. “Those people who used the name of the Taliban in the attack will be tried in Sharia courts,” the email added.

DG ISPR Lieutenant General Asim Bajwa said that there were a total of four terrorists who were contained and killed at the hostel’s stairs and rooftop. He said two cell phones which were in terrorists’ use have been seized. He said even after the terrorists were killed, one of the mobile phones were still getting calls from an Afghan SIM. “We are in hold of information, confirming who the terrorists were and where they were operating from,” he said, adding, more clues are being gathered from the seized mobile phones. "We also have information where the instruction to the terrorists was being made," he said. 

An improvised explosive device, weighing three to four kilograms, was defused by BDS personnel near the Haji Camp Bus Stand in Peshawar, the provincial capital of KP. BDS personnel said that the three to four kilograms of explosive material was used in the making of the bomb which was also fitted with a remote controlled detonator. Police also claimed to have arrested a suspicious person from the vicinity.

SFs killed nine terrorists in air raids in Khyber Agency of FATA.

At least five BLA militants, including 'commander' Suhbat Baloch, were killed during a raid in BLA hideout in Chapar area of Barkhan District. Three BLA militants were arrested. “The arrested persons have been shifted to an undisclosed location for interrogation,” FC spokesman said. Two persons kidnapped six months ago were also recovered from the hideout where Light Machine Guns, AK-47 assault rifles and anti-Pakistan seditious material were also found.

FC detained 16 suspects in Turbat District, Panjgur District and Sui area of Dera Bugti District for questioning.

Unidentified militant robbed of PKR 375,000 from JS Bank branch in Block-7 of Gulistan-e-Jauhar area of Gulshan Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. SSP Jawed Jiskani said that seven men riding motorcycles arrived at the Gulistan-e-Jauhar and held the two security guards hostage at gunpoint. The SSP said the CCTV footage of the robbery clearly showed the faces of the robbers and they would soon be arrested.

The ATC handed over 11 suspects of al Qaeda to CTD on a seven-day physical remand. The Police department claimed that the suspects were planning to spread terror in the city and produced the suspects Qari Muhammad Moshin, Qari Muhammad Akram, Moshin Khan, Syed Muhammad Riaz, Anas Muhammad, Muhammad Arshad, Abdul Wakeel, Abdul Wahab, Muhammad Owais and others before ATC Administrative Judge Farooq Shah amid tight security. According to CTD, the suspects belonged to al Qaeda and LeJ and seized a rickshaw with explosives, rocket launchers, rifles, detonator and bombs from their possession.

The bank accounts of 30 seminaries and over 300 NGOs have been frozen in Gilgit-Baltistan for failing to provide details of sources and activities. An official document signed by Assistant Commissioner Rana Waqas Anwar, who also has registration authority in GB, stated that the registration of NGOs and seminaries will be cancelled if they fail to submit required documents by the second week of February this year. “For the last eight years these madrassas and NGOs haven’t submitted their audit reports, details of projects implemented so far, and sources of funding,” the document stated. The orders have been communicated to banks operating in the region, it added.

January 21

Four civilians died and two others received injuries when one of six rockets fired from the Afghan side of the border hit a shop in Angoor Adda in South Waziristan Agency of FATA. According to officials, four of the rockets fired at about 2pm landed in open fields while two hit the market.

The political authorities in Bajaur Agency claimed to have completed the long-awaited documentation of the religious seminaries operating in the region in order to ensure better education and facilities there. Sources in the political administration said that important data of all the religious seminaries operating in the agency had been collected during the process, which continued for over a year. The sources said a joint committee of local administration and various religious organisations carried out the task, adding heads of seminaries showed full cooperation with the administration in the documentation process.

Security Forces arrested dozens of suspects in a search launched in the aftermath of the Charsadda university attack in KP. Search operations in Charsadda are ongoing as Police comb the area around the University. Several suspects have been arrested. During initial investigations, four grenades, 16 magazines and 240 cartridges were recovered from the site of the attack. Several schools were closed last weekend after intelligence suggested militants were planning an attack, according to Muhammad Amir Rana, director of the private Pakistan Institute for Peace Studies. A KP Government spokesman said they were closed as part of a security drill.

The COAS, General Raheel Sharif said that the armed attack on Bacha Khan University was managed from Afghanistan. According to ISPR, the COAS telephoned Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah and US commander in Afghanistan General John Campbell and shared the details of gathered information in connection with the attack on the university. The COAS said an operative of TTP issued instructions to the terrorists in Charsadda from a location in Afghanistan. COAS General Raheel Sharif sought cooperation of Afghanistan in tracing and hunting down the militants, who perpetrated the attack.

Pakistan and Afghanistan need to work together to effectively overcome the Taliban challenge, the White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said.  "The conclusion that we've drawn here is...that the Taliban poses a security threat to both countries, and that the nations of Afghanistan and Pakistan are going to be able to more effectively confront that threat if they're able to more effectively cooperate," Earnest said.

US Vice President Joe Biden held a tri-lateral meeting with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in Davos to discuss the recent reconciliation efforts. During the meeting, Biden reaffirmed US support for reconciliation and improved bilateral ties between Afghanistan and Pakistan. "Any sort of decisions about how the continuation of those talks and any sort of agreement that could be produced by those talks about whether or not that's in the interest of those countries to pursue those are decisions that will be made by the leaders in those two countries, as it should be," he said.

January 22

At least six militants were killed while a soldier embraced martyrdom and two other injured during a search operation in Mashkey area of Awaran District in Balochistan.

Balochistan Home Minister Mir Sarfaraz Ahmed Bugti narrowly escaped an attempt on his life when his convoy hit a roadside bomb in Baker tehsil of Dera Bugti District. The Minister Mir Sarfaraz Ahmed Bugti was on an official visit to his hometown in Baker tehsil. However, no casualties were reported in the blast. It exploded moments after Bugti’s vehicle crossed the site. One vehicle in the convoy was partially damaged as a result of the blast. No group has so far claimed responsibility.

Police killed three al Qaeda terrorists in a shootout in Azam Chowk in Layyah District of Punjab Province, thwarting a major terror attack. According to a CTD spokesman, “a team of Police personnel on January 22 night raided a house in Azam Chowk. The terrorists present in the house opened fire. The police returned the fire killing three terrorists.” “Three of their accomplices, however, managed to escape,” he said, adding that a huge quantity of explosives was recovered from the house.

Unidentified militants shot dead personnel of Police Elite Force Unit in Rasheed Ghari area of Peshawar, the provincial capital of KP. SP Imtiaz said that Elite Force Policemen Shahzeb and Ihsanullah were riding a motorcycle en route their office when unidentified militants opened fire. The SP said that both the victims were well trained in the use of security scanners. The motorcycle-riding assailants escaped from the attack site.

The CTD of Peshawar arrested a terrorist wanted for attacks on Police personnel. According to CTD Peshawar, the force took action in Bannu and arrested a terrorist named Sadaqat Ullah who is a resident of Suleman Khel Peshawar. The arrested terrorist was involved in bomb attacks on Badhaber Police back in 2012 and destroyed electricity towers.

A leader of Geedar faction of TTP released the video footage of four militants who, he said, had carried out January 20’s assault on Bacha Khan University in Charsadda. The footage strengthened indications of a possible split in the TTP whose ‘central spokesman’ Mohammad Khorasani had issued a written statement that evening disassociating the group from the attack and calling it un-Islamic. But the same day, a Geedar faction’s leader Umar Mansoor said his fighters had attacked the campus. Mansoor is considered close to Mullah Fazlullah, the embattled leader of TTP. 

The footage shows the four attackers, two of them in their mid-teens, practicing shooting as part of their training before carrying out the Charsadda attack. The video which spread rapidly on Facebook but was not released on media accounts of the TTP. The fresh attack had chilling echoes of a 2014 assault on a school in Peshawar, also claimed by Mansoor’s faction. Mansoor had issued a similar video in the wake of the Peshawar attack on December 16, 2014. The authenticity of the video could not be independently verified.

Pakistan has asked Washington to drone Mullah Fazlullah and others involved in terrorist activities, including the most recent Bacha Khan University attack. Security official sources said that Washington has been conveyed through its Islamabad mission that it must play its role in targeting the TTP terrorists, who are using the Afghan soil for their nefarious designs against Pakistan. The US authorities have been told that they should at least now be serious in targeting the TTP men in Afghanistan as Kabul continues to be under the influence of New Delhi. India is said to be involved in destabilising Pakistan. Only a few months back, Islamabad had shared dossiers of Indian involvement with the UN and Washington.

January 24

At least 17 terrorists were killed in aerial raids conducted by the SFs in Shawal and Dattakhel areas of North Waziristan Agency in North Waziristan Agency of FATA. 

Four persons suffered injuries when a roadside bomb exploded near Phandu Chowk area of Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Police said the bomb was planted near a bridge with an aim to target the vehicle of Salahuddin, the caretaker of a local Masjid.

Three people, identified as Asghar, Majeed and Sher Agha, were shot at and injured by unidentified armed assailants near Kalapul area of Lyari Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

Another man, identified as Muhammad Faisal was shot at and injured near Fawara Chowk in Garden area of Saddar Town.

The MPA Javed Nagori escaped a gun attack while passing through the Kharadar area of Saddar Town. No casualties were reported.

Police arrested 17 suspects during search operations in Mahmoodabad, Shah Faisal Colony, Baldia Town and Defence areas. A large cache of arms and ammunitions was recovered from their possession. The Police arrested suspects hailing from Waziristan, including three injured after an exchange of fire with the Police. The Defence Police also arrested three suspects while the Baldia Town Police arrested three Lyari gangsters. The Karachi police also claimed that they had arrested three gang war criminals from Ittehad Town and weapons were also recovered from their possession while eight suspects were arrested during a raid in Natha Khan Goth.

According to the Federal Ministry of Interior and Narcotics Control report issued CTD arrested 64 suspects in parts of the country under the National Action Plan for allegedly providing financial assistance to terrorists. The province-wise details stated that 41 such cases were reported in Punjab with 57 people involved. 51 arrests have been made so far in the province.

In Sindh, five people were arrested for their alleged involvement in facilitating terrorists by providing them financial assistance and in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa four cases were reported to the CTD in which eight suspects were arrested. Some cases were registered in Diamer District of Gilgit Baltistan and 28 suspects were arrested for allegedly providing shelter and meal to terrorists.

Balochistan Government decided to establish a special force to be deployed at university campuses across the Province. “The new force would be subservient to vice chancellors,” said Balochistan Home Secretary Akbar Hussain Durrani. He further said that the administrative powers over the force would be with Police. Durrani said 60 personnel will be deployed at each university, adding that the force will be well equipped.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif pledged to continue operations against terrorists of all hues while admitting that progress on the revised national counterterrorism strategy has been slow. “We will fulfill this responsibility,” the PM said, adding, “In certain areas of NAP, progress has been slow, but in many other areas work has been started.”

US President Barack Obama in an interview with the Press Trust of India published urged Pakistan to show it is “serious” about crushing extremist networks operating on its territory, saying the latest mass killing of students underlined the need for more decisive action, reports Dawn. He said that the crackdown on extremists was “the right policy” but was quoted as saying that Pakistan “can and must” take more effective action.

“Pakistan has an opportunity to show that it is serious about delegitimising, disrupting and dismantling terrorist networks,” Obama said, adding, “In the region and around the world, there must be zero tolerance for safe havens and terrorists must be brought to justice.”

According to authoritative sources, around 130,190 combing and search operations were conducted till the middle of January 2016 throughout the country as part of the NAP. Giving the details of operations, the sources said that in the Islamabad Capital Territory and Gilgit-Baltistan, 6,580 search operations were conducted since January 15, 2015, 3,455 arrests were made and one terrorist was killed. Similarly, in the Punjab, the number of operations carried out was 38,038. During these operations, 6,346 arrests were made and 62 terrorists were killed. The highest numbers of operations were carried out in the KP i.e. 55,634. The arrests made were 3,223 while the number of terrorists killed was unavailable.

In Sindh, 28,003 operations were carried out and 29,818 arrests were made. The number of those who were killed during the operations was 946. Around 1,935 operations were conducted in Balochistan and 4,115 arrests were made. Also, 423 terrorists were killed during the operations. Overall, 46,957 arrests were made and 1,432 terrorists were killed (excluding KP) in some 130,190 countrywide operations since January 15, 2015, the sources added.

Authoritative sources have revealed that while the Operation Zarb-e-Azb had started much earlier in 2014, since January 2015, during operations in Fata, 1,359 terrorists have been killed and 916 injured. These include 440 killed during Zarb-e-Azb, 308 killed in Operation Khyber, 1, 454 killed in Operation Khyber II, and 157 killed in Shawal. Also, 80 terrorists were injured in Zarb-e-Azb, 393 in Khyber, 1, 422 in Khyber II and 21 in Shawal. During this period, the armed forces had 78 Shaheeds in Zarb-e-Azb, 45 in Khyber, 1, 57 in Khyber II and eight in Shawal. Also, 203 armed forces personnel were injured in Zarb-e-Azb, 55 in Khyber, 1, 190 in Khyber II, and 17 in Shawal. In all, there were 188 Shaheeds and 465 Ghazis during the one year of operations in FATA.

January 25

Five people including TTP Chief Mullah Fazlullah has reportedly been killed in a drone strike in Afghanistan. According to reports, a drone strike was conducted on Fazlullah’s house in Afghanistan, killing at least five people, including a woman said to be TTP chief’s wife and his son.

Police arrested a terrorist of TTP in a raid at an under construction petrol pump on the Super Highway in Jamshoro District of Sindh. The terrorist was identified as Qamar Zaman Mehsud who hails from North Waziristan. Police recovered 10 kilograms of explosive material, a bundle of wire, three hand grenades and an automatic rifle with 50 rounds from the his possession.

The Islamabad High Court dismissed the Government's petition seeking voice samples of Mumbai terror (also known as 26/11) attacks mastermind and LeT 'commander' Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi and six other accused in the case. The prosecution had filed an application in the Islamabad High Court seeking voice samples of the suspects to compare it with the communication intercepted by Indian intelligence and then present it before the ATC as evidence against the seven accused. But, the IHC dismissed the petition.

In 2011 and 2015, the issue of obtaining voice samples of Lakhvi had been dismissed by the trial court on the grounds that "no such law exists that allows obtaining of voice sample of an accused". In the recorded intercepts, the suspects are alleged to be instructing the terrorists.

January 26

FC killed four suspected militants in an exchange of fire during search operation in Winder area of Lasbela District. FC Spokesman Khan Wasey said that SF also recovered weapons from their possession, adding that the suspects were involved in carrying out bomb blasts, kidnapping-for-ransom and attacks on SFs in the Province.

SFs killed two militants in Pasni area of Gwadar District. Illegal arms and ammunition were also recovered. The militants were identified as Mohammad Younus Kolanchi and Mohammad Hanif Kolanchi. “Their accomplices managed to escape,” a police official said.

The FIA arrested two suspects, identified as Asmatullah and Muhammad Ramzan, for selling and possessing Afghan SIM cards in Chaman town of Qilla Abdullah District. "FIA also recovered a large number of Afghan SIM cards from the possession of the accused, the duo were shifted to FIA's Chaman centre for interrogation," said an unnamed official.

The body of a khasadar official was found in Safi tehsil of Mohmand Agency in FATA, after he was abducted in the night of January 23. An official of the political administration confirmed Rehmatullah, a resident of Alingar in Safi, had been murdered and his body dumped. His body was found in a search operation. The slain khasadar officer was the son of a former peace committee leader, Saifur Rehman.

Unidentified militants lobbed a hand grenade outside Balochistan Minister Changez Khan Marri’s house in DHA Phase II in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. However, the grenade failed to explode. No casualties were reported. Police booked militants affiliated with BLA for the attack. The Minister had arrived in Karachi on the night of January 25, 2016.

Rangers arrested of six suspects, including four officials of the Fisherman Cooperative Society (FCS), who were allegedly working as facilitators for Lyari gangsters, during raid in Kalri area of Lyari Town. The spokesman for the Sindh Rangers said Saleem Deedak, Mehar Bux, Mohammad Saeed Baloch and Dil Murad were arrested during raids in the Kalri area. The suspects were moved to the Rangers headquarters for interrogation and later taken to an Anti-Terrorism Court, which allowed their preventive detention for 90 days. The initial interrogation showed that the four were affiliated with the Aziz Jan Baloch and Baba Ladla groups and were working as their facilitators.

Rangers arrested an alleged target killer, identified as Mohammad Farooq alias Lendi, in Kharadar area of Saddar Town. The ATC allowed the Rangers to keep him in preventive detention for three months. Farooq was said to have admitted that he belonged to the militant wing of a political party and was involved in a number of target killings.

Rangers arrested a target killer, identified as Mohammad Adnan Siddiqi, during a raid in the Ramswami area of Saddar Town. The Rangers got his 90-day Preventive detention from the ATC. The spokesman said Siddiqi belonged to the notorious militant wing of a political party and admitted murdering six people in attacks.

Rangers arrested four suspected criminals, including Lyari gangsters during raids in Korangi Town and Tharu Lane area of Jamshed Town. Weapons, including SMGs, uni-barrel rocket launchers, pistols, hand grenades and Avan grenades were seized from their possession.

An IED, allegedly meant to target a school, was defused by BDS personnel in Bashirabad area of Peshawar, the provincial capital of KP. Officials say unidentified suspects handed over the improvised bomb, fitted in a pressure cooker, to a child, asking him to take it to his school. But the little boy instead of taking it to school brought the IED home. A TTP slogan was written on the pressure cooker, officials said. On seeing the explosive, family members of the child alerted Police and BDS personnel were called in. According to BDS officials, around five kilogrammes of explosive material was used in the device.

January 27

Police claimed to have killed four TTP militants, identified as Amirullah Mehsud, Khan Wali alias Khanewal and Khoni Khel, in an encounter near Safoora Goth area of Gulshan Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. SSP Malir Rao Anwar said that Police conducted a raid in Safoora Goth area after receiving a tip-off about the presence of suspected militants.

A joint team comprising Police and Intelligence Officials recovered a huge cache of weapons and ammunition from warehouses on GT Road and Kohat Road areas of provincial capital Peshawar. Officials claim militants wanted to carry out a major act of terrorism in the area, for which they were dumping dangerous weapons at the locations raided. Recovered arms include over a thousand M4 and M6 rifles, telescopes and a large numbers of bullets, officials said. An unnamed official said that the arms were foreign made.

SFs arrested four suspects, demolished three hideouts of terrorists, and recovered arms and ammunition from Harnai District. Khan Wasey, the spokesman for Frontier Corps, said that 500 kilograms of explosives, four IEDs, one hand grenade, and a number of other weapons were recovered during the raid.

Journalists and activists in Pakistan faced an increasingly hostile climate in 2015 due to harassment, threats and violence from both the state and militant groups, according to HRW Report released. In the 659-page World Report 2016, which has reviewed human rights practices in more than 90 countries, HRW says the Government imposed new restrictions on free speech and funding of civil society groups in 2015 due to the security situation faced by the country.

Asia Director of HRW Brad Adams said that Pakistan should not curb freedom of expression and association under the threat of extremism. “Pakistan should reverse course and repeal or amend laws curbing freedom of expression and association,” he said, adding, “The Government should never use the threat of extremist violence as a pretext to violate the rights of independent voices.”

The Report further added that media was also deterred from reporting on or criticising human rights violations in the country’s counter-terrorism operations, it added.  “Pakistan’s Government should take urgent steps to create an enabling environment for free expression and association,” Adams said. “Pakistan needs to fight terrorism, but denying its citizens fundamental freedoms and due process rights is an unlawful and extremely misguided approach.”

January 28

Four Policemen were killed when TTP militants open fired at them while they were sitting inside a mini gas station situated on Munir Mengal Road in Satellite Town of provincial capital Quetta. TTP spokesperson Mohammad Khorasani said, “The TTP’s special unit STF’s commandos successfully carried out the attack at a police mobile at Quetta’s Satellite Town. The commandos disappeared after the attack”.

Two bogies of the Jaffar Express were partially damaged in an explosion near railway tracks in Mithri area of Sibi District. However, no casualties were reported.

A terror bid was foiled by Police when a terrorist during an encounter with Police blew himself up in Domeli Mor area of Jhelum District. The terrorist who was allegedly targeting the Rawalpindi to Lahore Pakistan Express tried to plant explosives on railway tracks near Grand Trunk Road when some passerby reported about this to Motorway Police. The terrorist lobbed a hand grenade at security personnel upon sight and then blew himself up, security sources said. Police recovered four hand grenades and two pistols, as well as two National Identity Cards and a vehicle from his possession.

Police defused five bombs planted under a 132KV electric tower in provincial capital Peshawar. The bombs, comprising 20 kilograms of explosive materials, were packed into four pressure cookers and a canister in Phando area the main transmission lines powering Peshawar.

KP CM Pervez Khattak while talking to the head of Department for International Development (DFID) Joanna Reid at CM Secretariat in Peshawar said that border between Pakistan and Afghanistan is not safe and without securing it cities in the country can’t be made safe for people. The CM said that entry points at Miranshah, Angoor Adda and Torkham were open for any sort of movement and terrorists involved in the recent Charsadda incident came from across the border. “The incidents of suicide bombing have dropped visibly as there is no hideout for training of terrorists,” he added.

Adviser to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz while speaking to India Today said that they are still waiting for India’s response. Sartaj Aziz said, “We are still waiting for India to suggest the dates for the foreign secretary-level talks. The ball is in India’s court.” The talks, which were scheduled for January 15, 2016, in Islamabad, were called off after the January 2, 2016, Pathankot terror attack.

The head of Council of Islamic Ideology (CII), Muhammad Khan Sherani said that he is willing to review the blasphemy laws that critics say are regularly misused and have led to the deaths of hundreds, to decide if they are Islamic, reports Daily Times. Chairman Sherani said that he was willing to reopen the debate and see whether sentences as harsh as the death penalty were fair.

“The Government of Pakistan should officially, at the government level, refer the law on committing blasphemy to the Council of Islamic Ideology. There is a lot of difference of opinion among the clergy on this issue,” Sherani said, adding, “Then the council can seriously consider things and give its recommendation of whether it needs to stay the same or if it needs to be hardened or if it needs to be softened”.

Terrorist safe havens inside Pakistan, providing shelter to terrorist outfits like the Taliban and the Haqqani Network, is a serious problem, US General John "Mick" Nicholson told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee during his confirmation hearing as commander to the US and NATO forces in Afghanistan. "I view it (terrorist safe havens inside Pakistan) as a serious problem," he said. If confirmed by the Senate, he would replace General John Campbell as commander.

"One of the biggest problems has been the sanctuary, particularly for the Haqqani Network, particularly the involvement of the ISI in Pakistan, which in many cases have been supporting the Haqqani Network. Have you seen any progress in this whole problem?" Senator John McCain, Chairman of the SASC asked General Nicholson.

In response, General Nicholson said that continued presence of the terrorist safe haven has been a major problem. "This has been one of the principal challenges. It's a sanctuary that our enemies, in particular the Haqqani Network, have enjoyed inside Pakistan," he said. The US is not satisfied that there's adequate pressure put on the Haqqanis, he asserted.

January 29

The dead body of a polio worker, identified as Shah Faisal, who had gone missing from Jamrud tehsil of Khyber Agency in FATA on January 27, 2016, was found in Regi area of provincial capital Peshawar. Political Tehsildar at Jamrud, Asmatullah Wazir, said that Shah was a contractual employee with the Health Department.

Two suspected militants were killed in an exchange of fire with SFs in Mastung District late. Official sources said that unidentified assailants attacked a convoy of SFs in the Kanak area of the District. They fired rockets and shots. SF personnel in the convoy retaliated and the exchange of fire continued for about three hours.

Six soldiers of Pakistan Army and a child were injured as a suicide bomber blew himself near Cantt area of Zhob District. The attacker attempted to enter Cantt area when the Friday prayers were underway, said Provincial Home Secretary Akber Hussain Durrani. TTP-Mehsud faction claimed responsibility for the attack. The spokesman Azam Masood called Radio Free Europe Mashal correspondent in Dera Ismail Khan District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and claimed responsibility for the attack.

The Government of Balochistan during a meeting held with Chief Minister Sanaullah Zehri in the chair pledged that the responsibility of providing security to people would be fulfilled at all costs and actions against terrorists and anti-social elements and their facilitators would continue to purge the province of all terrorists. He decided to pursue a `tit-for-tat policy’ to deal with terrorists and their facilitators to ensure fool-proof security in the Province. There was consensus among participants that terrorist attacks on police and other security personnel were a reaction to successful anti-terror operations being carried out by law enforcement agencies.

Unidentified militants hurled a hand grenade at a Rangers check post in North Nazimabad Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.  However, no casualties were reported.

A hand grenade was lobbed in a market in Liaquatabad Town. No casualties were reported.

Police arrested six TTP militants after a shootout in Rizvia Society of Liaquatabad Town and found an IED planted inside a motorcycle. SSP Central Muqadas Haider said acting on a tip-off a police team raided a hideout in Rizvia Society. After an encounter, Police arrested six terrorists and shifted them to their headquarters. Four TT pistols, grenades, a Kalashnikov and an IED concealed inside a motorcycle were found at their hideout. Two of the arrested men were identified as TTP 'commander' Sayd Alam Mehsud and Sayd Ameen Mehsud. He added that the six terrorists were members of the TTP network in Dera Ismail Khan District of Afghanistan and Afghanistan.

Rangers arrested a target killer, identified as Adnan alias AD alias Danish, in Kharadar area of Saddar Town. The paramilitary force said that Danish was a member of a militant wing and an ATC had granted his 90-day preventive detention.

PM Nawaz Sharif while chairing a meeting at PM House has reiterated that Karachi operation would continue till its logical conclusion. PM Nawaz expressed government’s resolve saying, “War against terror will continue till elimination of last terrorist.” He said, “Eliminating the menace of terrorism and ensuring a peaceful Pakistan for our future generations is the top most priority of PML-N Government and our successes against terrorism and achieving economic stability have created a new hope in people.”

January 30

Dr Manan Baloch, a senior leader of the BLF, and four other suspected militants were killed in an encounter with SFs in Mastung District of Balochistan. Addressing a press conference at the Chief Minister Secretariat in Quetta, Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Ahmed Bugti said Manan headed the BNM, an organisation supporting militants. Bugti said SFs conducted a search operation in Killi Datu area of Mastung during which an exchange of fire took place between the SF personnel and militants hiding in a house. He said Manan and four other men were allegedly involved in subversive activities, including attacks on law enforcement agencies.

The local administration along with tribal elders demolished 12 houses of suspected militants during a search operation in the Haleemzai tehsil of Mohmand Agency in FATA. Political Naib Tehsildar Mehmood Shah said that the local administration conducted the operation in Ghalanai Mian Gan, Adin Khel and other villages of the tehsil. The militants, whose houses were demolished, were identified as Sheraz, Mohammad Shah, Haroon, Aziz, Adnan, Ziarat Shah, Sazono, Ibrahim, Yasir, Akhtar Ali, Khatir and Subhan. Earlier, the local administration had handed over a list of 22 wanted militants to the Haleemzai elders to demolish their houses. An official statement said the administration conducted the operation with the help of Haleemzai elders.

Sindh Rangers claimed to have arrested Uzair Baloch, leader of the Lyari gang and chief of proscribed PAC, in a targeted operation on the outskirts of Karachi. Rangers arrested Baloch while he was attempting to enter the city, said a press release issued by the paramilitary force. The press release also claimed the recovery of weapons from Baloch. His family members claimed that Baloch was arrested by Interpol at the boarding lounge of Dubai airport on December 27, 2014, and the Security Forces after keeping him under arrest illegally since then, has declared his arrest now.

January 31

Sindh Rangers Chief Major General Bilal Akbar stated that Karachi operation has not slowed down. “Some people say the Rangers operation in Sindh has slowed down. It has not. You have to understand that we will be more prominent and active when there are more enemies to overpower. You will not see much action when the criminals have been weeded out as we don’t bother law-abiding citizens,” he explained.

Notwithstanding Pakistan Government's ban on the media coverage of terrorist groups such as the JuD and LeT, Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed has appeared on a private Pakistani channel's talk show. The PEMRA on November 2, 2015 had restrained all Pakistani television channels from "all kinds of coverage" of the JuD, its front FIF and about 60 other proscribed organisations and their leaders. However, Saeed made an appearance on a talk show on Channel 24 on January 27, 2016. He glorified his organisation's "public welfare" works and talked about how India and the US were "pressuring" the Pakistani Government to take action against organisations like the JuD and JeM. Saeed, in reference to the Pathankot terror attack, dismissed the suggestion that the government was "patronising" some "non-state actors and banned organisations".

Law Enforcement Agencies arrested banned outfit 'commander', identified as Yaseen alias Papu, from Baghdadi area of Lyari Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

Ghosia Girls and Boys Elementary School in Paposh Nagar area of Nazimabad Town received a written threat from TTP asking for immediate closure.

February 1

Three madrassas were raided and sealed over alleged involvement in 'suspicious' and 'illegal' activities in Eastern Bypass area of provincial capital Quetta. The sealed seminaries include Madrassah Hussainia, Madrassah Taleemul Quran and Madrassah Abu Bakar Siddique. The raiding party also detained four clerics, identified as Qari Saifur Rehman, Surat Shah, Habibullah, and Qari Wali, for interrogation. Police said that the madrassas were sealed under the National Action Plan.

February 2

At least 18 TTP militants were killed in a drone strike along Pak-Afghan border in Gomal District of Paktia province in Afghanistan. Afghan officials confirmed the TTP militants were killed in the strike. Nabiullah Peerkhel, the Paktika Governor's spokesman said that the militants were heading to the border region in Afghanistan when the drones rained down missiles on them. While the exact identity of the militants killed could not be determined, reports from Wana town of South Waziristan Agency in FATA of Pakistan suggested that 14 militants were from the Mehsud tribe and four from the Ahmedzai Wazir tribe.

In a major breakthrough, intelligence agencies claimed to have arrested the main facilitator of the attack on the Bacha Khan University on January 20. According to intelligence agencies, Waheed Ali alias Arshad, categorised as "Terrorist A", was arrested in Nowshera last week. "He had made arrangements to flee to Afghanistan and hired a taxi to take him to the Pak-Afghan border at Torkham. Had there been any further delay, the man would have slipped away," the sources said. "He had shaved his beard and had packed up. His taxi was intercepted and he was picked up after positive identification," said the sources, requesting they not be identified.

In his initial statement, according to the sources, the alleged facilitator who is in his early 30s said the planning of the attack on the university had been in works for six months in Achin District of Afghanistan, the base of the militant commander Khalifa Omar Mansoor alias Omar Naray. He said he had surreptitiously made videos of the Punjab Regiment Centre and a police station in Mardan as possible targets and taken the footages in a memory chip to Omar Naray, but the plans had been dropped because of heavy security in the two places.

The mastermind and planners, Waheed said, later opted for Abdul Wali Khan University in Mardan and prepared a group of four militants to carry out the attack. He said that he was the one who had made the video of the four attackers with Khalifa Mansoor and that was the reason why the Abdul Wali Khan University was mentioned in the video. He said Khalifa Mansoor had provided him PKR one million to execute the plan and procure arms and ammunition for the attack. The plan to attack the Abdul Wali Khan University was also cancelled because of better security arrangements and the mastermind was informed about the new target in Charsadda.

Pakistani authorities have sealed 182 madrassas since the December 16, 2014, Peshawar school attack, in a countrywide crackdown under the NAP on religious seminaries allegedly involved in extremism, a report of the Associated Press of Pakistan said. The madrassas were closed in Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa because of their involvement in promoting extremism and other suspicious activities.

As part of the strategy to choke terror financing, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has so far frozen PKR 1 billion in 126 accounts which have a link to banned militant groups. Law-enforcement agencies have also recovered around PKR 251 million in cash. The Government has put names of 8,195 people in the fourth schedule and 188 on the Exit Control List while movement of 2,052 hardcore militants has been restricted.

Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Khan Zehri during the concluding session of a two-day seminar on Prospects of Peace and Prosperity in Balochistan once again invited self-exiled Baloch leaders to the negotiating table for resolving their issues. He said that the Government was ready to hold dialogue with the estranged leaders within the constitutional framework. "I empower Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed to approach self-exiled angry leaders and initiate talks with them," Zehri said, adding that he believed negotiations, and not bullet, was the solution to the concerns of disgruntled Baloch leaders.

The COAS General Raheel Sharif said that Balochistan has become a hotbed of proxy wars for regional and global grand strategy by many powers. "This is a battle that we all are fighting, and we shall continue to fight, till peace prevails across the width and breadth of the Province," General Raheel said, adding that Pakistan Army, Frontier Corps, Police, Coast Guards, Levies and above all, the people of Balochistan, have defended the integrity of Pakistan with unflinching resolve for which they deserve special appreciation.

February 3

Three militants were killed when a suicide bomber detonated the explosives he was wearing, killing himself and two accomplices, in Giddir area of Kalat District. Three FC personnel were injured. According to official sources, FC personnel on a tip-off about the entry of an explosive-laden pick-up in Giddir area launched a search operation. They spotted a suspected vehicle carrying three persons and tried to stop it. In retaliation, the suicide bomber detonated the bomb.

India and Pakistan are in touch on a daily basis on investigations into the January 2, 2016, Pathankot air base attack and will continue to remain engaged, the Indian Government said at the International Counterterrorism Conference in Jaipur (Rajasthan). "Since the Pathankot attack, we have been in touch with Pakistan. We have been in touch at my level and the NSA [National Security Advisor] level and will continue to do so because only by remaining in touch, we can expect them to progress on issues of terror on the basis of information which we have provided to them," Indian Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar said.

The Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh asserted that the nation would stand by Pakistan if it takes action against terrorists. "Our Government will stand by Pakistan if it takes decisive action against terrorists and their organisations. For India, Mumbai and Pathankot terror attacks have signified a tectonic shift," Singh said.

February 4

The JuD 'chief' Hafiz Saeed praised January 2's terror attack at Indian Air Force's base in Pathankot and encouraged similar attacks against India. Addressing a rally of around one thousand people in the PoK, Saeed said: "800,000 Indian troops are committing genocide on Kashmiris. Don't they have a right to carry out Pathankot-style attacks for their defence?" Saeed also lauded Kashmiri militant leader Sayed Salahuddin, who heads the UJC that has claimed responsibility for the attack. "You have only seen one attack on Pathankot. Matters could easily escalate." Crowds at the rally shouted slogans including "The war will continue until the liberation of Kashmir" and "We are ready for jihad" Strategic analyst Ayesha Siddiqa said Saeed's praise of Salahuddin could be part of a "deflection strategy" to steer blame away from JeM, and by extension Pakistan, where it is based.

February 5

PM Nawaz Sharif voiced hope that the Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue process between Pakistan and India would move forward in days to come as he underlined that "differences" on all outstanding issues, including on Kashmir, can be resolved only through talks. PM Sharif also said that Pakistan is ready to cooperate with India on every matter, including terrorism.

"Pakistan is most affected by terrorism. Who wants eradication of terrorism more than Pakistan?" he questioned. "Difference of opinion between two countries is not unheard of. What is unusual is that for 6-7 decades, we have not been able to get rid of these differences," he added. "I brought this up with the Indian leadership and would like to reiterate that the solution to our problems lies in dialogue. Unless we sit together and talk about these issues, they won't be resolved," the PM said.

February 6

At least 12 persons, including four FC officials, were killed and another 38 persons injured in a suicide blast in Multan Chowk area of Quetta. According to report, the attacker targeted a security vehicle close to Liaquat Park. Heavy firing was also heard in the area following explosion. Three Policemen were reportedly injured in the attack. Balochistan Home Secretary Akbar Durrani said that a biker collided with the FC car that caused a massive explosion. Several cars including FC truck and motorcycles were completely destroyed in the attack. A splinter group of the outlawed TTP claimed responsibility for the attack in an e-mail sent to local media. However, the name of the group is not mentioned by the local media.

February 7

FC personnel killed two TTP militants during an encounter on Sariab Road in provincial capital Quetta.

Police detained 35 suspects during raids on Sariab Road and in surrounding areas.

According to official documents, some 625 militants have already surrendered before the state in the past six months started under the reconciliation process of NAP. Negotiations are currently under way with 125 insurgents in Balochistan over their possible surrender of weapons. Militants who give up violence have been offered cash support and jobs to help them lead a violence-free life. Balochistan Home Secretary Akbar Durrani said that the Provincial Government was committed to its reconciliation policy and the militants who have already surrendered were being rehabilitated. Under the scheme, each pardoned militant would be awarded PKR 500,000 in installments besides getting the compensation for his guns.

The SIT constituted by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to investigate January 2, 2016, terror attack on an Indian airbase in Pathankot (Punjab), concluded that there is no substantive evidence to suggest Maulana Masood Azhar, the head of the JeM militant group, ordered or masterminded the assault. According to media reports based on information from officials privy to the SIT investigations, Pakistani authorities have conveyed to New Delhi that there was no substantial evidence that could prove the involvement of Maulana Azhar in the Pathankot assault.

The SIT informed the civil and military leadership that the Indian evidence was insufficient to implicate Maulana Azhar. The SIT has sought further information from India, which it refused to share. However, the team did not rule out involvement of some low cadre members of the JeM, saying that too could be established only if New Delhi shared the information they have asked for.

February 8

At least two persons were killed in an IED blast in the Havid area of Bannu District in KP. According to Station House Officer of Havid Police Station, Rizwan, the IED went off in front of a shop as a shopkeeper was about to open the door. The shopkeeper, Dilnawaz, and a rickshaw driver were killed on the spot.

A Shia elder was shot dead while his son escaped unhurt in an attack near the Kohati Gate area of Peshawar, the provincial capital of KP. Locals said Malik Iftikhar Ali along with his son Hasnain was on the way in Kohati Gate when armed motorcyclists opened fire on them. Iftikhar Ali died on the spot while his son remained unharmed in the attack.

Two suspected militants were killed in an exchange of fire during an operation launched by Frontier Corps in Zhob District. Two submachine-guns and two hand-grenades were recovered from their possession.

A constable of the FIA, identified as Muhammed Ali Khanzada, was found dead in a car parked on Lyari Expressway in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. SP-Jamshed Dr Fahad Ahmed said that it appeared that Khanzada was killed somewhere else and later the car and his body were abandoned at the expressway.

The Czech Government paid USD six million in ransom in March 2015 to secure the release of two women, Czech psychology students Hana Humpalova (24) and Antonie Chrastecka (24), kidnapped in Balochistan in March 2013. According to details, the women had entered from Iran as tourists and were escorted into Pakistan by a tribal Policeman. In a video released shortly after their kidnapping, the two young women had pleaded for the release of Aafia Siddiqui, jailed in 2010 in the United States. After two years in captivity, Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka announced the women's release and return to Prague on March 28, 2015.

They both said they did not know who abducted them, because nobody introduced themselves or gave them any explanation for the kidnapping. Negotiations with the kidnappers on the payment of a ransom were carried out by the Czech state's Security Council. "The talks weren't easy, but in the end, none of us wanted to assume responsibility for the death of two young girls," said an unnamed official involved in negotiations. "The decision to hand over the ransom was taken unanimously," the source added.

February 9

Traders' leader, identified as Haji Abdul Haleem Jan (70), was killed in a targeted attack in his shop located in Qissa Khwani Bazaar of provincial capital Peshawar. "He had received extortion calls last year. However, the motive of the killing will be determined after investigation," Capital City Police Officer Mubarak Zeb said.

Two sons of a retired Major General Chaudhry Ahmad Khan were abducted from provincial capital Lahore. One of them, identified as Hammad (34), was kidnapped from outside his home on Sarfaraz Rafiqui Road and the other son, identified as Nauman, from his office on Walton Road.

A BLA militant, identified as Chuthal Magsi, was arrested during a raid by Police in Lasi Goth area of Malir Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh, for his involvement in an attack on a shrine in Korangi Industrial Area on September 18, 2015. Police recovered a pistol and grenade from his possession. Two of his accomplices, Mir Hazaar Bughti and Bilal Malik, managed to escape.

The Supreme Court stayed the execution of two suspects, identified as Taj Muhammad and Aliur Rehman, convicted by military courts for facilitating the December 16, 2014, Army Public School attack in Peshawar.

A two-judge bench headed by Justice Dost Muhammad Khan also stayed the execution of two other convicts. Notices have been issued to the Attorney General of Pakistan as well as Judge Advocate General (JAG) Branch to appear in the court on February 16, 2016. The bench observed that military courts should give a reason in their judgment. The Peshawar High Court had rejected the appeals of the four convicts following which their counsel Latif Afridi took up their petitions to the Supreme Court.

COAS General Raheel Shareef during a Special Apex Committee meeting of KP and FATA held at the local corps headquarters in Peshawar said that the State is entering the most difficult phase of the military operation against terrorists. "After successfully evicting terrorists form their sanctuaries and restoring writ of the state, we are in the most difficult phase of the operation physically rebuilding the war-damaged areas, resettling of Internally Displaced Persons and eventually establishing an administrative system that focuses on the needs and aspirations of the people," he said.

February 10

Unidentified militant shot dead six people after barging into a house in Bonistan area of Panjgur District. The victims were identified as Muhammad Ismail, Noor Shoaib, Muhammad Nazar, Momin Ghulam Jan and Islamil.

One ASI, identified as Sultan Mehmood, was killed and another, identified as Constable Shoaib, was injured in an exchange of fire during a raid in the Sajan area of Mardan District. Police were conducting a raid on the house of a wanted individual, Imran, when they were ambushed, said District Police Officer Faisal Shahzad.

The DG of the IB, Aftab Sultan, informed the Senate Standing Committee (SSC) on Interior that the IS was emerging as a threat in the country because several militant groups had soft corner for it. He named LeJ and SSP as examples. Though IS and Afghan Taliban were rivals, the TTP coordinated with it, he added.

The Federal Ministry of Interior has been denying the presence of IS in Pakistan, saying that it was an Arab organisation. But DG Sultan said that the IB had busted a big IS network after several members reached Punjab following Karachi's Safoora Goth carnage in May 2014. He said that terrorists were reorganising and stressed the need for a border control mechanism, particularly with Afghanistan, enhanced regional cooperation, implementation of the National Action Plan and de-radicalisation policy with a focus on counter-narrative. The IB chief called for a comprehensive policy for "rehabilitation of jihadi elements" and effective implementation of policy for monitoring social media and cyberspace.

COAS General Raheel Sharif while addressing the Corps Commander Conference at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi District said that terrorists are being funded externally by hostile foreign intelligence agencies, and their sympathisers at home providing shelter and refuge. He said that Pakistan had achieved significant successes in operation Zarb-e-Azb, and the war against terror required unified response. The General reiterated that all efforts and resources would be employed to bring about lasting stability and socio-economic revival for prosperity and well-being of displaced people of affected areas.

The US administration proposed USD 860 million in aid for Pakistan, including USD 265 million for military hardware, which it said would help the country fight terrorists, secure nuclear weapons and improve ties with India. Secretary of State John Kerry in his proposals said that the budget includes USD 859.8 million towards sustaining ties with Pakistan and making progress to "disrupt, dismantle and defeat violent extremist groups".

"The requested funding will support the country's counter-insurgency missions, and bolster stability, energy access, economic growth, and social reform," Kerry said in a letter accompanying his proposals. "Pakistan lies at the heart of the US counter-terrorism strategy, the peace process in Afghanistan, nuclear non-proliferation efforts, and economic integration in South and Central Asia," State Department said making its case for the aid to Pakistan under the Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) Fund.

February 11

Two bank robbers, identified as Arsalan Iqbal and Dilawer alias Murad alias Tiger, were shot dead in a shootout with SIU Karachi personnel in Korangi Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. The two were allegedly involved in the three bank heists that took place in Karachi this year and the Sindh Government had announced a reward of PKR 1 million for their arrest.

SSP Mohammed Farooq Awan of the SIU Karachi said that investigations regarding bank heists were underway during which he was tipped that members of a dacoit gang were expected to attempt a robbery in the Korangi Industrial Area (KIA). Acting on the tip-off, an SIU team was deployed in the KIA for surveillance, during which the officers witnessed three suspects on two motorcycles, who engaged the personnel in an encounter after they were signaled to stop. Two of the robbers were arrested in injured condition, while the third one managed to escape.

An Assistant Professor of Balochistan University, identified as Para Din, was shot at and injured when unidentified armed assailants opened fire on his vehicle in the Almo Chowk area of Quetta. No outfit claimed responsibility for the attack.

Former President General (Retired) Pervez Musharraf confirmed to an Indian TV channel that the "ISI trains JeM and LeT terrorists". While describing Masood Azhar of JeM as a "terrorist", Musharraf said Hafiz Saeed of LeT was nothing short of a national hero in Pakistan. "LeT is not involved in terror in Pakistan," said Musharraf, adding, "I don't believe anything that Headley had said... Pakistan intelligence should interrogate Headley."

Despite intelligence warnings that the IS is an emerging threat, the FO insisted that the terrorist group has "no organised presence" in the country. "Let me reiterate that there is no organised presence of Daesh, the Arabic acronym for IS, in Pakistan," FO spokesman Nafees Zakaria said.

February 12

A head constable of capital city police was killed and two others injured in firing by two motorcycle bourne unidentified assailants at Pindora Chungi of Industrial area Police Station in Islamabad. The slain Policeman is identified as Head Constable Imtiaz and injured personnel were Police Constable Zahid and FC Constable Bismillah Jan.

Unidentified assailants abducted Afghanistan's former Governor of Herat province. Sayed Fazalullah Wahidi had arrived in Islamabad along with his family to get visas to travel to UK, diplomatic sources said. The former envoy had gone to a restaurant with his 12-year-old grandson when unidentified assailants arrived in two vehicles and kidnapped him, leaving the child. According to a Police official, the former governor was staying at a guesthouse in Islamabad's F7 sector and was near Rana Market when he was abducted. Fazalullah Wahidi was considered an influential Governor as he remained very close to former President Hamid Karzai and also served as Governor of Kunar province.

Three separate hand grenade attacks in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh, created panic among the masses. However, no loss of life has been reported. According to details, unidentified men hurled hand grenade at the main entrance of Mobina town Police Station. No loss of life was reported. Separately, unknown persons hurled hand grenade near APWA Girls College Karimabad. SSP Central Muqqadas Haider said the hand grenade was hurled from Karimabad flyover. Further, armed men launched hand grenade attack near a private school in North Nazimabad.

The ISPR Director General Lieutenant General Asim Saleem Bajwa revealed that the law enforcement agencies have successfully broken the nexus between al Qaeda (subcontinent chapter) and LeJ. Briefing media persons, the army spokesman said security forces have achieved a major success during the ongoing Karachi operation by arresting over 97 hardcore terrorists, including three high-value targets (HVTs). "We have broken the overall network and nexus of terrorists belonging to al Qaeda subcontinent chapter and LeJ. They were backed by Tehreek-e-Taliban… This is a major achievement, but we have much more to do," Bajwa said. He said the terrorists were involved in almost all major incidents of terrorism in Karachi, adding that all of them are in army's custody.

February 13

The SFs to have killed 10 suspected militants during a targeted operation in Sibi District of Balochistan. The security personnel reportedly conducted an operation in Sangaan area of Sibi district and apprehended 12 suspected militants following an exchange of fire in which 10 suspects were killed. An official informed that SFs also demolished three sanctuaries being operated by militants in Sangaan.

The Spokesman for Balochistan Government, Anwar ul Haq Kakar, told that a key commander of BLA Aslam Acho was reportedly killed by SFs in Sibi.

A Jewellery shop owner, identified as Wahidullah, was shot at and injured in Gulbahar area of provincial capital Peshawar. According to Police sources, the attack was perpetrated by extortionists. "Wahidullah received a letter from unidentified militants who were demanding millions in extortion," said an unnamed Police official. "When he did not pay any heed to these letters, his house was attacked with a hand grenade in Javed Town - now he has been attacked and injured."

February 14

The bullet-riddled dead body of a man, identified as 50-year-old Liaquat Ali Baloch (50), was found from under the Lasbela Bridge, situated within the jurisdiction of the Rizvia Police Station, in Liaquatabad Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. His body bore torture marks and had three bullet wounds. Baloch was the brother of Lyari gangster Barkat Baloch, who was actively involved in Lyari gang war.

Police and LEAs, in a joint operation, arrested a militant, identified as Usman Khan, who belonged to al Qaeda Barr-e-Sagheer, from the area of Saddar Town. The arrested militant has revealed his connections with the facilitators and masterminds of May 13, 2015, the Safoora attack. According to investigative sources, Khan is a dentist by profession and he was delivering to the al Qaeda the extortion money, collected from various areas of the city. One Kalashnikov and nine bullets were recovered from his possession.

Police on a tip-off regarding presence of militants arrested three militants during a search operation in Smarty Baiyan area of Kohat District. The Police also recovered of weapons from their possession.

As many as 56 of the 13,849 religious seminaries geo-tagged by the PITB have been put in Category A for their suspected links with banned organistions. Documents show that most of these seminaries identify themselves with the Deobandi. An unnamed Home Department official said that updated information on seminaries across the province was now available to the authorities concerned. "We have information about their sectarian affiliation and number of students and teachers at each facility," he said.

It was further reported that the Provincial Government is also working on geo-tagging all of 256,000 Afghan refugees in the Province. A PITB official said that so far geo-tagging of 66,100 Afghan refugees had been completed. He said the process involved information gathering using biometric technology.

Terrorist groups don't have a base in Pakistan to fall back on, according to the ISPR chief Lieutenant General Asim Saleem Bajwa, who also said that sporadic attacks by frustrated terrorists could not dent the military's resolve to eliminate the malady once and for all. "We have seen how the rate of terrorist incidents declined during the past one and a half years, and how it brought dividends to the entire nation," said Asim Saleem Bajwa in an interview. The recent uptick in terrorist violence in the country came after a long hiatus, triggering a media guessing game about the effectiveness of the new national strategy against terrorism and extremism.

February 15

At least nine militants, belonging TTP and LI, were killed and five others were injured in air strikes in Rajgal and Kukikhel areas of Tirah Valley in Khyber Agency of FATA.

At least one soldier was killed and four others were injured by an IED near Talai village in Wana town of South Waziristan Agency.

Police killed four criminals during an ongoing operation against criminals in the Katcha areas of Khanpur and Ghouspur in Shikarpur District. One Policeman, identified as Ali Gul Mahar, was also killed two others were injured in the exchange of fire. The operation was launched to recover three abductees, including a minor girl, from Thull abducted over eight years ago. However, the Police a woman, who along with five friends was kidnapped from Sehwan area two years ago. During the operation, the Police torched over ten houses and detained more than 10 suspects. Moreover, The suspects have been shifted to an undisclosed location for interrogation.

Unidentified armed assailants raided the residence of Dr Aafia Siddiqui, Pakistani scientist imprisoned in US over charges of terrorism, and tortured the watchman in Gulshan-e-Iqbal Town of provincial capital Karachi.

Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah while speaking to the media in Khairpur District said that there is no presence of the militant Islamic State group, saying that its name is being used to terrify people. The CM categorically stated that "the IS doesn't exist in any part of Sindh". According to him, some banned outfits and terrorist organisations were using the name of the IS for their ulterior motives.

SFs arrested two militants, including 'commander' of TTP Zewar alias Zewar Mulla, during a raid in a house in Fateh Jang tehsil in Attock District. Mulla is stated to be a close associate of late TTP head Hakimullah Mehsud and a TTP 'commander' Tariq Afridi, who too is dead. Zewar was also associated with Saeed Khan, a Pakistani commander of Islamic State, or Daesh. Zewar, who had been collecting funds for the TTP, was a resident of Dabori in Orakzai Agency of FATA.

SFs arrested another militant, identified as Ziaur Rehman, during a search operation in Shahu area.

LEAs found a homemade explosive device near a girls school in Kot Lakhpat area of provincial capital Lahore.

February 16

The CTD, Sindh, Intelligence Wing, claimed to have arrested three accused, including a TTP militants, who were alleged to be involved in target killings and killing of armed forces personnel. According to details, SSP Amir Farooqi of CTD Intelligence Wing said that the CTD personnel on a tip-off raided the outskirts of the city and after an encounter arrested Hanif Khan alias Fazalullah Mehsud. The Police also recovered weapons, including Kalashnikov, from his possession. However, the associates of Khan managed to flee. During investigation, it was found that the accused belonged to TTP-Sajna Group and recently came to Karachi to form a network.

The CTD personnel arrested Mohammed Kasif along with a Kalashnikov in Yousuf Goth area of Gadap Town. Later, the Police also arrested Mohammed Farooq and recovered a Kalashnikov and 10,000 bullets from his possession. Further investigations are underway.

The CTD personnel arrested Mohammed Kasif along with a Kalashnikov in Yousuf Goth area of Gadap Town. Later, the Police also arrested Mohammed Farooq and recovered a Kalashnikov and 10,000 bullets from his possession. Further investigations are underway.

The CTD detained three alleged terrorists from Torghar District and recovered six kilograms of explosives, including four feet safety fuse, three detonators and one hand-grenade from their possession. The press release said the three terrorists were coming to Torghar from Shangla District. They were planning to use the explosives in a sabotage act in Torghar.

The CTD arrested a suspected terrorist, identified as Ghulam Qadir, from Pir Bala village in the limits of Mathra Police Station in provincial capital Peshawar. According to the CTD, Qadir was associated with a banned organisation and was involved in collecting extortion from the locals and handing it over to other members of his group in Torkham.

February 17

Seven militants, belonging to TTP and LeJ, who were on their way to launch an attack in Sharaqpur area, were killed in an exchange of gunfire during a Police encounter in Sheikhupura District. According to a statement from the Provincial CTD, a dozen or so militants were riding motorcycles and were on their way to attack Police when they were intercepted. "When the firing stopped, seven unknown terrorists were found dead," it said, adding that the men were killed "by firing from their accomplices who fled from the scene taking benefit of darkness". Shahzad Sultan, a senior local Police Official confirmed the incident.

Two Police Constables, identified as Muhammad Asif and Mubashir, manning a security check post in Chanab Pulli area of Iqbal Town in provincial capital Lahore were shot dead by three unidentified militants.

Two Police Constables, identified as Muhammad Asif and Mubashir, manning a security check post in Chanab Pulli area of Iqbal Town in provincial capital Lahore were shot dead by three unidentified militants.

At least five Khasadar force officials were killed when unidentified militants attacked a Khasadar check post at Mohmand-Peshawar Highway in Pandyali area of Mohmand Agency in FATA.

Unidentified militants killed two Khasadars near sub-divisional headquarter Ekka Ghund in Darwazgai area near Mohmand-Charsadda border in lower Mohmand Agency. Following the attacks, the solar tube-well in Darwazgai was also set on fire, soon after which the attackers fled from the scene.

At least three persons of the Marri tribe were killed and four others were injured in a firing incident in provincial capital Quetta. The victims were identified as Marri tribal leader Mozai Mari and his two sons.

Three security personnel were killed and two others were injured when militants launched an attack on a Levies check-post in Kahan area of Kohlu District. After the attack, Security Forces launched a search operation.

During a meeting held between Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah and Corps Commander of Karachi Lieutenant General Naveed Mukhtar in Karachi it was decided that the ongoing operation against terrorists in Karachi will be extended to the interior of Sindh to strengthen the operation further and eliminate terrorists' cells in these areas. These cells, according to sources, exist in the interior of Sindh in areas bordering Balochistan.

During the discussion, according to sources, the incidents of terrorism that occurred recently in Jacobabad and Shikarpur Districts also came up for consideration and it was stated that such acts were not possible without the presence of facilitators in the interior of Sindh.

The Gilgit-Baltistan Government has decided to allocate a substantial piece of land to Pakistan Army in Thak Das area of Diamer District so it can set up headquarters and ensure security for the CPEC. Diamer Deputy Commissioner Usman Ahmad said, "The army will make its headquarters in Thak Das this will help provide security to CPEC installations."

February 18

Two personnel of the Khasadar force were killed in Machni area of Mohmand Agency in FATA. The incident occurred late in the night when the deceased personnel Taj Ali and Bilal were on duty at a solar tubewell in the area.

The JuA, a faction of TTP, claimed responsibility for the February 17 attack on Khasadar force at a security checkpost in Karapa area of Pandyali tehsil in Mohmand Agency in which seven personnel were killed.

The CTD Punjab Police lodged Indian airbase Pathankot attack case of January 2, 2016. Sources said the case has been lodged against unknown terrorists on the plea of Deputy Home Secretary Aitzaz-ud-Din. Murder, attempt to murder and terror charges have been included in the case.

Earlier, the special investigation team formed by Pakistan to investigate the Pathankot incident has formally recommended to the Federal Government to lodge an FIR on the basis of the information provided to the National Security Adviser Lieutenant-General (retd) Nasser Khan Janjua by his Indian counterpart Ajit Doval, background interviews and documents available with The News revealed. The Interior Ministry, on its notification issued on January 13, 2016, had constituted a six-member team. The team was headed by a convener named Rai Tahir, a reputed chief of the CTD, Punjab Police.

Pakistan hanged 324 people last year to rank third worldwide in terms of executions, but the vast majority of those put to death had no links to militant groups or attacks, The Reprieve report said. According to the report prepared by the Reprieve, an international human rights group, and Justice Project Pakistan, of the 351 executions that followed, only 39, or about 1 in 10, involved people linked to a known militant group or guilty of crimes linked to militancy. The Government lifted a moratorium on executions in late 2014 as a measure to deter militancy after TTP militants attack Army Public School in Peshawar on December 16, 2014.

Pakistan now ranks after China and Iran, carrying out 324 hangings in 2015 alone, the report says. Juveniles, mentally ill prisoners, and prisoners who had been tortured or had not received fair trials were among those executed, shows an analysis of media reports and data from courts, prisons and legal teams. "The numbers show that government's claims do not match the reality," said Maya Foa, Director of the death penalty team at Reprieve. "Those going to the gallows are too often the poor and vulnerable," she said in a statement. "It is hard to see how hanging people like this will make Pakistan safer."

February 19

At least five militants were killed during search operation, conducted by SFs in Karapa area of Pandyali tehsil in Mohmand Agency of FATA. The security personnel also seized explosive material from their possession.

Afghan religious scholar Abdul Haleem was shot dead by unidentified assailants in Sultan Khel area of Khyber Agency. According to SFs, unidentified attackers opened fire on Afghan religious scholar leaving him seriously injured and was rushed to hospital where he could not succumb to his injuries.

Militants blew up part of a newly constructed Government school in the Tiarza tehsil area of South Waziristan Agency. A splinter group of the TTP, Sajna group, claimed responsibility for the attack. "We have blown up the school because it was a government installation," said Azam Tariq, a spokesman of the group, warning the group would continue to attack government targets.

Law Enforcement Agencies shot dead four militants who were seen planting an IED in the Abdul Rehman Zai area of Gulistan town of Qilla Abdullah District. "A large quantity of arms and explosives were also confiscated from their possession.

At least three bullet-riddled dead bodies were recovered from Shakha Dara area of Chaman town.

Another bullet-riddled dead body was recovered in Toba Achakzai area of Qilla Abdullah District.

Two people were shot dead when unidentified militants opened fire at them in the Dilsora Karez area of Chaman town. No outfit claimed responsibility for the attack.

FC troops foiled an act of terror in Dera Murad Jamali city of Naseerabad District. The militants were planning to use the IED weighing 8 kilograms against the security forces guarding gas pipelines.

FC arrested four alleged militants and recovered arms from their possession in Mastung area of same District in Balochistan. According to an FC spokesman, acting on a tip off, FC personnel carried out a search operation in the area and apprehended four alleged militants.

At least three Policemen were killed in a gun attack near Miran Wala Bangla Bypass in Faisalabad District of Punjab. The suspected miscreants opened fire at Policemen when they were stopped by patrolling Police near Miran Wala Bangla Bypass, resulting in the killing of three Policemen. However, the suspects managed to escape.

February 21

Three civilians were killed and one injured when an IED blew up their car in Navi Mandi area of Data Khel tehsil in South Waziristan Agency of FATA. The four were returned IDPs traveling to Bannu to retrieve their belongings.

Unidentified militants hurled a grenade at the building of the District Education Office in Gwadar District. However, no casualties were reported.

Rashid Baloch, a member of the Baba Ladla gang in Lyari area of Karachi, was arrested in the Bhana Mari area of Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Peshawar's CTD and IB jointly raided houses in Bhana Mari along Kohat Road and arrested Rashid Baloch, alias 'Chichi' after receiving a tip-off that the gangster was currently in Peshawar, waiting for a new passport to flee abroad. According to initial investigations, Baloch had fled to Peshawar because of the Rangers-led Karachi operation, which began in 2013.

February 22

The Sindh Police killed 12 terrorists, belonging to AQIS and LeJ, in two separate encounters in Pipri area and Gadap Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. In the first encounter, at least eight militants were killed in Pipri area of Bin Qasim Town. "Eight militants were killed on the spot while four others, who fled the scene, were killed in Gadap area," said SSP Rao Anwaar of Malir District. In the second encounter, at least four militants were killed in Gadap Town. He further said that the encounters, which lasted several hours in a slum off the National Highway, occurred during a raid on a hideout after police received intelligence-based information that terrorists belonging to banned outfits had gathered there. The terrorists had been working jointly and targeting law enforcement agencies in Karachi, Rao added. Five of the deceased suspects were identified as Sohail, Khalil, Bilal, Talha and Abdul Salam. During the search operation the Police they found four pressure cooker bombs, suicide jackets, detonating cords, five hand grenades, ball bearings, five submachine guns, three 9mm pistols and hundreds of bullets.

The Pakistan Rangers, Sindh, disclosed the arrest of two suspects affiliated with PAC who were said to be involved in a number of extortion cases. As per a spokesman of the paramilitary force, a team conducted an intelligence-based raid in Landhi Town and, after an encounter, arrested Munawwar and Rafiq with weapons. Both were shifted to the headquarters for interrogation during which they confessed to their affiliation with the PAC and to have extorted more than 24 traders and industrialists.

Police arrested four Policemen among nine people allegedly involved in 'kidnapping, extortion and robbery' and a suspected gangster linked with the Lyari gang war, who had recently returned from the United Arab Emirates, said Karachi-West SSP Azfar Mahesar.

Police, acting on a tip-off, detained Abdul Rehman alias Khan Bhai, in Jehanabad area of SITE Town. "He was wanted in 12 murder cases and 20 cases pertaining to kidnapping-for-ransom and extortion," said the SSP-West. After the launch of a Rangers-led operation, the suspect escaped to the United Arab Emirates, where he was working at a police workshop in Sharjah. He had recently returned to the city and was a close associate of two gangsters, Fahim and Naseem, linked with the Uzair Baloch-led gang, added the officer.

A JIT 'reinvestigating' the Baldia factory fire case that claimed the lives of 259 workers and caused injuries to 50 labourers in Karachi on September 11, 2012 has come to the conclusion that it was a "planned sabotage and terrorist activity". The JIT report said: "Based upon available evidence and expert opinions, the JIT has come to conclusion that factory fire was a planned sabotage/terrorist activity and not an accidental fire." It added that the alleged terrorist act was carried out "due to refusal to pay extortion (Bhatta) of Rs20 (Twenty) crores and partnership in factory profits by factory owners to office-bearers, namely Rehman Bhola and Hammad Siddiqi of MQM-A".

A drone strike, targeting suspected militant hideouts in the Shahidano Dhand area of Lower Kurram Agency, wounded one unidentified suspected militant. The drone fired four missiles at militant hideouts, as a result of which, one militant was injured and three hideouts were destroyed.

SFs arrested several suspects and seized a huge cache of arms when they enforced curfew and carried out a search operation in Mohmand Agency. The curfew was clamped and the search operation was started early in the day. During the search operation, several persons who couldn't prove their identification were detained. Their identity wasn't revealed by the authorities. The troops also recovered arms from their possession. The detained men were shifted to another, undisclosed place for interrogation.

An indefinite dusk-to-dawn curfew was imposed across Mohmand Agency as SFs stepped up operations in the region.

A key operative of the LeJ, identified as Asif Chotu, was arrested during a search operation in Dera Ghazi Khan District. Chotu was wanted by the Police in the Justice Baqar Maqbool attack case and other crimes. The suspect was carrying head money of PKR 2.5 million.

Adviser to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz revealed that one of the mobile phone numbers linked to those who attacked the Pathankot airbase on January 2, 2016, had been traced to the JeM headquarters in Bahawalpur District of Punjab. Aziz called the lodging of the FIR in connection with the Pathankot assault a "logical and positive step" in bringing the perpetrators to justice. Aziz further confirmed that JeM chief Masood Azhar had been under "protective custody" since January 14, 2016.

Pakistan was the 10th largest arms importer in the world in 2015, down one spot from number nine the previous year, The SIPRI database revealed. Pakistan spent USD 735 million on arms imports in 2015. The largest exporter of arms to Pakistan in 2015 was China, with arms transfers worth USD 565 million, followed by the US with USD 66m in arms transfers. Pakistan is also China's largest buyer for arms, accounting for 35 per cent of total arms sales in the country, followed by Bangladesh and Myanmar.

The HRW report released in Istanbul stated, "Rangers, a paramilitary force, were given complete control over law enforcement in the city of Karachi, where there were reports of extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, and torture". The report further read, "The security forces are engaged in extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances to counter political unrest in the province of Balochistan and in the port city of Karachi in the Sindh province."

HRW South Asia Director, Meenakshi Ganguly said that the HRW believed that there were serious security challenges in Karachi, and the State had the responsibility to ensure public order. However, she added, it appeared that the security forces, unwilling to do the hard job of actually investigating crimes and building evidence-based cases to ensure convictions, had instead chosen to be judge and executioner. She added that these were short-term gains and could lead to a cycle of violence. "The Pakistani government should initiate police reforms and training to ensure that law enforcement is rooted in due process," Ganguly noted.

In its report, the HRW also questioned the transparency of military courts. It read, "At least 15 people were sentenced to death in proceedings shrouded in secrecy, giving rise to fair trial concerns. Neither the Pakistani government, nor the military articulated any criteria for the selection of cases to be tried in military courts, giving the impression of arbitrariness. No independent monitoring of the process was allowed, and the news of death sentences was often given by the Inter-Services Public Relations, a military communications agency, through the social media."

February 23

Twenty-four militants were reportedly killed in airstrikes by the PAF jet fighters in the Dattakhel subdivision of NWA in FATA. Security officials said the aircraft started bombing the suspected militant positions early in the day, destroying eight sanctuaries in the remote and mountainous Shawal Valley of the Dattakhel subdivision near the Afghan border. The sources said that some of the sanctuaries established by the militants in Alwara, Khar Tangi and Maizar areas of Dattakhel were targeted by the airstrikes.

15 militants were killed and eight of their hideouts destroyed near the Pak-Afghan border area after cross-border mortar shelling targeted a security checkpost in the Alwara Mandi, Khar-Tangi and Maizer areas of Kurram Agency.

An IED explosion injured seven FC personnel in Tayarza tehsil of SWA. The FC vehicle was on routine patrolling of the area when it came under attack.

Two educational institutions in Islamabad received threats, one through a letter and the other over a telephone call. The Police are investigating the matter and trying to establish if the threats were a hoax. An administration officer at a law college in Aabpara, Jahangir Khan, lodged a complaint with the police and said he was at the office on February 19, 2016, when he received a landline call from an unknown number. The caller said a bomb had been placed in the college which will go off in 30 minutes.

The principal of a college in G-10 also lodged a complaint with the Police saying that a letter had been sent to the college through the post on February 18, 2016, saying the institute will be attacked on February 19. A senior police officer told Dawn that the cases were being investigated and efforts were underway to trace both the caller and the person who sent the letter.

An ATC sentenced two JeM terrorists, Kashif Siddique and Rashid Iqbal, to 10 years in prison for raising funds for the outfit. They were arrested by the Punjab CTD in Attock District on August 7, 2015, along with a money box placed near a mosque. The CTD officials found PKR 210 in the box and seized empty cash receipts, membership cards, books and pamphlets related to JeM.

Pakistan has confirmed that JeM chief Masood Azhar is in its "protective custody". Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's adviser Sartaj Aziz told a news channel that Azhar has been in custody since January 14, 2015.

February 24

Three suspected terrorists were killed in a shootout with Rangers in Manghopir area of Gadap Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. According to details, Rangers personnel started a search operation in Manghopir on reports about the presence of some terrorists. The raid turned into an exchange of gunfire. "The armed men in the hideouts attacked the Rangers team when they were taking positions following a tip-off about the presence of terrorists in the area more forces were called in to join the operation and after an exchange of gunfire three terrorists were killed. They all belonged to a banned outfit."" said the spokesman.

At least five FC personnel were wounded in an IED blast near a security check post in Wana town of SWA. FC vehicle was on routine patrol when the IED, planted along the roadside, exploded.

The CoAS, General Raheel Sharif directed the military commanders to begin the last phase of Operation Zarb-e-Azb in North Waziristan Agency.

The Government has shut down 254 suspected and unregistered madrassas across the country, Minister of State for Interior and Narcotics Control Balighur Rehman told the National Assembly. He said that 167 suspected seminaries in Sindh, 13 in KP, two in Punjab, and 72 unregistered madrassas in Sindh have been closed. "The government is countering hate speech and banning dissemination of extremist material," he added.

Regarding registration and regulation of seminaries, the State Minister said that the Government had completed 100 per cent mapping on agreed parameters in Islamabad and Punjab. Eighty per cent of the mapping exercise has been completed in Sindh, followed by 75 per cent in KP and 60 per cent in Balochistan. "There are 190 foreign-funded seminaries in the country, of which 147 are in Punjab, 30 in Balochistan, seven in KP and six in Sindh."

February 25

Former Afghan Governor Sayed Fazlullah Wahidi was recovered who was abducted in Islamabad on February 12. "Wahidi has been found and handed over to Afghanistan consulate in Peshawar," his son, Nemat Wahidi said. Unidentified persons had abducted Afghanistan's former Governor of Herat province in Rana Market area of F-7 sector in Islamabad. The former envoy had gone to a restaurant with his 12-year-old grandson when unidentified persons arrived in two vehicles and kidnapped him, leaving the child. The former Governor and an influential Afghan leader had earlier arrived in the Islamabad along with his family to get visas to travel to UK as British embassy in Kabul does not directly issue visas to Afghan nationals.

The Police claimed to have arrested 40 suspects including 11 Afghans and recovered arms and ammunition from their possession during search operations in Hayatabad and Nasir Bhag areas of Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The Police also claimed to have recovered 24 unregistered motorcycles, two pistols, a cache of bullets and drugs from suspects' possession.

The Punjab Government constituted a five-member JIT to carry out investigation into the Pathankot airbase attack of January 2, 2016. The JIT was constituted after Punjab CTD registered a FIR against the alleged attackers and abettors of the attack. The JIT would also be visiting the airbase next month to gather evidence subject to permission by the Indian Government. The JIT comprises Punjab CTD Additional IGP Muhammad Tahir Rai (convener), Lahore DDG Intelligence Bureau Mohammad Azim Arshad, ISI Lieutenant-Colonel Tanvir Ahmed, Military Intelligence Lieutenant-Colonel Irfan Mirza and Gujjaranwala CTD Investigating Officer Shahid Tanveer (members).

Undeterred by scuttling of its previous attempt to get JeM Chief Masood Azhar banned by the United Nations, India will again move the world body with the demand. "We will be moving the 1267 Sanctions Committee to also include the name of Masood Azhar on the sanctions list. It is a great anomaly that the organisation JeM is listed, but not its leader," Indian External Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup said. He also noted that India had already submitted to the UN's Sanction Committee a fresh list of what he called 11 terrorists from Pakistan-based groups affiliated to al Qaeda, Taliban and other outfits responsible for terrorism in the country. On February 18, a list of 11 individuals and one organisation "linked to terrorism in India", was submitted to the 1267/1989/2253 ISIL (the militant Islamic State group) and al Qaeda Sanctions Committee.

February 26

A death row convict, Saeed Khan, involved in attack on Sialkot cantonment, was hanged till death at the Central Jail of Adiala in Rawalpindi District.

Two Lyari gangsters, identified as Sami Yousuf (30), Adnan Moin (25), were injured in a Police encounter near Mirza Adam Khan Road in Lyari Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. They were arrested after the encounter.

Law enforcement agencies arrested Inspector Chand Khan Niazi, the prime accused in the March 17, 2013, murder case of Lyari gangster Arshad Pappu, during a raid in Lyari Town.

Rangers produced Chand Khan Niazi before Anti-Terrorism Court and informed it about 90-day preventive detention for questioning. The Rangers told the judge that they had credible information about suspect's involvement in offences that come within the ambit of Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.

February 27

At least 19 suspected militants were killed and four security forces personnel, including a captain, lost their lives during a gunbattle near the Pak-Afghan border in Mangroti area in Shawal valley of NWA in FATA. The ground forces surrounded a group of fleeing militants in Mangroti area killed 19 of them during an intense exchange of fire, the army's media wing, ISPR, said in a statement. The ISPR said that the deceased security personnel have been identified as Capt Umair, Havaldar Hakim, Sepoy Hameed and Sepoy Rashid. On February 24, Pakistan Army launched its final phase of Operation Zarb-e-Azb to go after the terrorists still holed up in the strategic valley.

Air Force jets pounded militants' hideouts in the in the Maizer area of the Dattakhel tehsil in NWA and killed at least 15 TTP militants. "As many as four hideouts were destroyed in the strikes this morning. Among the 15 killed militants six were Uzbeks," a security official in the area said.

Levies force recovered three unidentified dead bodies from Mashkay area of Awaran District.

FC detained three alleged militants and recovered arms from their possession during a search operation in Wahdat Colony area of provincial capital Quetta. The recovered arms included nine pistols, thee shotguns and two rifles.

Police and law enforcement agencies apprehended a wanted terrorist among 60 suspects during search operations in different areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. According to Police, the law enforcement agencies carried out targeted search operations in Muslim Town, Khushhal Colony and Hakimabad area of Nowshera District. At least 20 suspects including 11 Afghan nationals were taken into custody. The suspects were shifted to unknown location for interrogation. Similarly, CTD also arrested a suspected terrorist from Mingora area of Swat. The suspect is accused of remote control bomb attack on Security Forces in Sarband area in 2008. In another operation in Peshawar, the police and officials of the law enforcing agencies arrested 45 suspects including Afghan nationals from different areas of the provincial capital. Police carried out search operations in Faqirabad, Pathang Chowk and Ring Road area. At least 45 suspects including five Afghans were arrested during the search operations. The police also recovered weapons and drugs from some of the suspects.

February 28

Malik Mumtaz Qadri, an Elite Force commando convicted of killing former Punjab Governor Salman Taseer on January 4, 2011, was executed at the Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi District at around 4.30 am. Qadri was sentenced to death for assassinating Taseer on October 1, 2011. Qadri said that he killed Taseer over what he called the politician's vocal opposition to blasphemy laws of the country. His mercy appeal was rejected by President Mamnoon Hussain. "I can confirm that Qadri was hanged in Adiala jail early Monday morning," senior local Police Official Sajjid Gondal said.

Police detained 11 more suspects during a search operation in Pakistan Bazaar area of Orangi Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. The Police said arms were also recovered from their possession.

Police and intelligence Agencies arrested two activists of a political party, identified as Rizwan alias Bayya and Khurram, on charges of extortion, during a raid in an unspecified location in Karachi.

A suspect, associated with a banned organization, was arrested, on charges of distributing literature against the Government and for seeking enforcement of Shariah in the country, from Murree in Islamabad. Shaukat Ali, an official of the Bhara Kahu Police, said that the suspect was distributing literature in front of Farooqia Masjid on Murree Road when he was arrested. "The literature was against the Government and it stressed that Shariah should be enforced in the country. As the accused belongs to a banned outfit, he was arrested," Ali added.

February 29

SFs killed 12 militants, including a TTP-Shehryar faction 'commander' Hezbollah, in Shawal Valley of North Waziristan Agency in FATA. Officials said that ground troops were advancing into the militants' strongholds and had captured Kund Ghar and Jung Top.

Unidentified armed assailants shot dead a local office bearer of PPP, Abdul Rasheed, near his residence in Korangi Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. "A 15 year old passerby girl was also injured as assailants resorted to aerial firing while fleeing the scene, however, her condition is out of danger," said Landhi SP Afnan Amin.

Rangers were directed by a two-judge bench headed by Justice Ahmed Ali M. Shaikh to arrange a meeting between Uzair Baloch, the chief of PAC, and his family members as per the jail manual. Baloch is currently in Rangers custody. Samina, wife of Uzair Baloch, had filed a constitutional petition through her attorney, Advocate Saify Ali Khan, asking the court to also allow her counsel to have an exclusive meeting with Uzair on a weekly basis. The matter was disposed of after the law officers of the provincial government and the paramilitary force submitted in court that they had no objection to the meeting of the suspect with his family members assuring the judges that the meeting would be arranged as per jail rules and regulations.

Unidentified armed assailants targeted the convoy of Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti in Dera Bugti District. However, he escaped the attack. The attackers managed to flee.

March 1

Two USAID officials were killed and two others, including a tehsildar, sustained injuries when an IED exploded in Ambar tehsil of Mohmand Agency in FATA. According to the political administration officials, tehsildar Faramosh Khan was on an anti-poppy drive in Ambar tehsil area along with Anti-Narcotics Force officials and USAID campaigners when an IED device planted on the roadside exploded. TTP-JuA, claimed responsibility for the attack.

Activists of various religious organisations and religio-political parties staged protest rallies across FATA and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa against the execution of Malik Mumtaz Qadri for killing Punjab Governor Salman Taseer. The cadres of ASWJ and Pasban Pakistan Town-I gathered near the Peshawar Press Club to record protest over the hanging. The speakers alleged that the Government executed Mumtaz Qadri to appease the United States and other imperialistic powers.

Documents seized by United States Special Forces personnel during the May 1-2, 2011 raid on Osama bin Laden's hideout in Abbottabad District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa have revealed that al Qaeda leaders were increasingly worried about spies in their group, drones patrolling the skies and secret devices tracking their movements, said translations released by Intelligence Agencies to media. The document - part of a cache of 113 documents - has been described by intelligence officials as Bin Laden's will. The documents are mostly dated between 2009 and 2011 and comprise the second cache from the raid to have been declassified.

In one of the declassified documents, bin Laden outlines how at least USD 29 million stashed in Sudan should be apportioned after his death, requesting that most of it be used to continue global jihad. He writes, "I hope for my brothers, sisters and maternal aunts to obey my will and to spend all the money that I have left in Sudan on jihad, for the sake of Allah."

Sartaj Aziz, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, while making comment at Council on Foreign Relations in Washington regarding Islamabad's considerable influence over the Taliban, said, "We have some influence over them because their leadership is in Pakistan and they get some medical facilities. Their families are here". He further added, "We can use those levers to pressurise them to say, ''Come to the table''. But we can't negotiate on behalf of the Afghan Government because we cannot offer them what the Afghan Government can offer them."

"We have to use these levers and [have] restricted their movements, restricted their access to hospitals and other facilities, and threatened them that ''If you don't come forward and talk, we will at least expel you''," he said of the tough message Islamabad sent to Taliban leaders, most of whom are believed to be operating out of Quetta, the capital of Balochistan Province. "[We told the Taliban leaders that] we have hosted [them] enough for 35 years, and we can't do it anymore because the whole world is blaming us just by [their] presence here," he said.

Further he said that Islamabad pressured Afghan Taliban leaders to participate in the first-ever direct talks with the Afghan Government on July 7, 2015.

March 2

Security Forces killed four suspected militants during an exchange of fire in Kohlu District. The spokesman for Frontier Constabulary, Khan Wasey, said the miscreants killed in Kohlu district belonged to an outlawed militant organisation operating in the area. He said that five sanctuaries were also demolished during the search operation and a cache of arms and ammunition was also recovered from their possession.

Three suspects, including a key 'commander' of the BRA, were killed and two others were injured in Kech District. Wasey said that the SFs recovered weapons from their possession. The spokesman further said the militants were involved in killings of labourers working at Shadi Kor Dam.

Two Lyari gangsters, identified as Younas alias Obama, and Muhammed Farooq alias Farooqa, were killed and one Rangers personnel was injured during an intelligence driven raid conducted by Sindh Rangers in Tharu Lane of Lyari Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. "When the paramilitary force reached the Tharu Lane to arrest the culprits, they started firing at the personnel in a bid to escape. The Rangers retaliated, resulting in the killing of the two terrorists," Rangers spokesperson said. They were allegedly involved in targeted killings, extortion and firing and grenade attacks on Policemen.

Law enforcement agencies arrested a suspect, identified as Waseem Ahmed, who is considered to be a close associate of PAC leader Uzair Baloch, during a raid at Karachi Fisheries. The law enforcers reportedly took him into custody on charges of financing gangsters. The money used to finance the gangsters was allegedly misappropriated from the Fisheries Department. The accused is a former Joint Secretary of the Collective Bargaining Agent Union of the Fish Harbour and also was an active member of the Lyari gang war.

An Ahmadi, identified as Qamarul Zia (35), was killed for his faith in Kot Abdul Malik city of Sheikhupura District. Zia was killed while he was leaving his house to fetch his children from school. Mazhar Ali, the brother of Zia, said that one of the men had stabbed Zia in the neck as he was mounting his motorcycle. Ali said a shopkeeper in the area had tried to rescue Zia but he also got injured by the assailants. Zia's murder marks the first killing of an Ahmadi in 2016. Zia was earlier attacked by some religious clerics in 2012. Some members of the Majlis-e-Tahaffuz-e-Khatm-e-Nabuwat had again attacked him six months ago.

A Division Bench of the Peshawar High Court issued notices to the Federal Ministries of Defence and Interior, asking them to explain why three brothers from Swat District were allegedly detained by Security Forces and why their property was confiscated. Justice Nisar Hussain and Justice Roohul Amin heard a writ petition filed by Zahida, the mother of Shujaat Shah, Syed Asmat Shah and Masood Shah, through her counsel Bashir Khan. Bashir argued the Security Forces had arrested Zahida's husband Daulat Shah and her sons a few years ago. "They remained missing for a long time. In November 2014, Zahida was informed her son Shujaat was in Lakki Marwat and husband in Kohat internment centre while whereabouts of Asmat and Masood were still unknown to her," the counsel told the court. "She was told her husband had died in the internment centre while Asmat had been placed in the proven militant or black category," Bashir added.

The Bench heard another petition in a missing persons' case and sought replies from CTD and Gulbahar Station House Officer. The accused allegedly picked Khan Wahid's a resident of Afridi Garhi in Peshawar. His counsel Khalid Afridi told the Bench that Wahid was a student of B. Com. and was arrested after CTD personnel raided his house on May 6, 2015. Afridi argued Wahid has been missing since then.

March 3

Personnel of the AVCC personnel killed five kidnappers during an encounter in Gulshan-e-Bilal area of Surjani Town in Gadap Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh and rescued a man kidnapped on February 28, 2016. According to the officers Zahid Khan, a trader was kidnapped from his shop situated in Shadman Town, District Central. The kidnappers had initially demanded a ransom of PKR 2 million which was later settled at PKR 0.5 million. The police after registering a case referred it to the AVCC for investigation. The police officers claimed that the accused had opened fire on the law enforcers however, they were killed following an encounter. The abductors were identified as Mazharuddin (gang leader), Mohammed Tanveer, Fahim, Ain Ali and Rasheed.

Three Lyari gangsters, identified as Khalil Baloch, Sagheer Baloch and Ala Daad, affiliated with Uzair Baloch gang, were killed in a Police encounter during a raid at a hideout in Machar Colony area of Kiamari Town. Weapons were also recovered from their possession. The police claimed that they were involved in recent grenade attacks in the Old City area and Lyari and were also wanted for over one a dozen cases of target killings, extortion and kidnapping for ransom.

A girl, identified as Khateeja (6), was killed while four others were injured in a grenade attack at a medical store located at Meera Naka near Lee Market in Lyari Town.

March 4

Sindh Rangers killed three criminals during an encounter near Barohi Chowk in Kalakot area of Lyari Town in provincial capital Karachi. Weapons were recovered from their possession. The gangsters were identified as Gul Nawaz (20), Bilal (22), and Naeem (20).

A woman, identified as Mehreen (35), was shot dead unidentified armed assailants near Siddiqui General Store in PIDC area of Sultanabad Colony of Liaquatabad Town.

A man was shot at and injured in a firing incident near Shalimar Bus Stop in Saddar Town.

Elsewhere in the Province, mobs clashed with Police, attacked a media office and a press club in Karachi and Hyderabad District as protesters took to streets after Friday prayers against the hanging of Malik Mumtaz Qadri, the assassin of former Punjab Governor Salman Taseer. The protesters pelted the office of a private TV channel with stones and damaged vehicles parked outside the office. In a statement PBA said, "PBA terms this act as an attempt to curb freedom of expression and to discourage media from performing its constitutional responsibilities." Also, some enraged people took to the streets in parts of Karachi on Friday, manhandling media teams, closing shops and beating up Police.

In addition, as many as 106 accused were arrested in a crackdown against criminals in different areas in the jurisdiction of South Zone Police. The Police also recovered one hand grenade, two Kalashnikovs, one repeater gun, eight magazines, three kilogrammes of drugs and allegedly looted valuables from the accused, said a police statement. It added that target killers, terrorists, robbers, street criminals, wanted men and absconders are among the arrested accused.

The CPLC, Pakistan Rangers, Sindh, and Police during a meeting decided to jointly fight the menace of street crime in Karachi with the help of volunteers. "The participants in the meeting noted that heinous crimes had been reduced after the launch of the Rangers-led operation in Karachi. However, citizens were concerned about street crime. A strategy was chalked out at the meeting to bring down street crime," said sources. According to sources, some 'hot spots' in Karachi South and East Districts were identified for a targeted operation against street crime.

A joint team of Abbottabad and Mansehra Police arrested two TTP militants from Mansehra District. "We have arrested two militants of the banned TTP. They were wanted in connection with many cases of extortions and other subversive activities in the Province," DIG, Hazara Range, Akhtar Hayat Khan Gandapur said. He said that a Police party led by DSP Amjad Hussain, raided a hideout on the outskirts of the city and arrested two terrorists belonging to North Waziristan."We will not disclose the names of the arrested militants at the moment as the investigation is in progress," he added. The official said that the terrorists had written a letter to Munir Khan, a businessman in Abbottabad, asking him to pay them PKR two million for jihad or else his entire family would be eliminated.

March 5

Police claimed to have killed four militants belonging to AQIS and LeJ during an encounter near Inara Garden in Gulshan-e-Iqbal Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Malir SSP Rao Anwar said that suspects were allegedly involved in the killing of security personnel and members of Shia community. "Suspects on seeing the police resorted to firing and in an ensuing encounter, four gunmen got gunned down," claimed the SSP Anwar. Two of them were identified as Noman Akhter and Sohail alias Kanga. The militants were involved in the killings of traffic officials, Policemen and Shias. Police also claimed to have seized a cache of weapons from their possession.

Four unidentified militants attacked a Police post near Al-Asif Square in Sohrab Goth area of Gadap Town. According to Malir SSP Anwar Rao, "They opened fire on the Police check post from some distance but Policemen manning the bunker retaliated with return fire, forcing the attacker to flee."

An ASI, identified as Syed Ali Ahmed, was killed when unidentified militants opened fire at a Police checkpoint near Kili Ghirsheenan in Pishin District. "Another constable of the check-post retaliated and fired several shots at the attackers, but they managed to escape," Police said. No outfit claimed responsibility for the attack.

AQIS and the LeJ are hiring Karachi-based militants of HuMA, and are planning attacks on major important installations in the city, said the Home Department letter issued to Police and Rangers. According to the letter, "During the interrogation of some recently apprehended high-value terrorists, it was learnt that on the directives of AQIS and the Tehreek-s-Taliban Pakistan, they had gathered information about some important installations and targets in Karachi, but the attacks could not be carried out because their leaders were arrested". The targets were American employees of an oil refinery in Keamari, the US consulate Saddar Division, the Sindh Assembly building, the Police Club, the residence of senior police officials, Rangers vans, and Police check posts.

An Intelligence Agency informed the Sindh IGP through a letter that "AQIS, the TTP, the JuA and the LeJ are planning to attack Counter Terrorism Department official Raja Umar Khattab". Khattab said that continuous operations against banned outfits had resulted in a decrease in terrorism-related cases and many key terrorist leaders, including Naeem Bukhari of the LeJ and Farooq Mussana of AQIS, had been arrested. However, he added, a cell of AQIS still existed in Karachi and operating in small groups as after the Operation Zarb-e-Azb in the tribal areas, their network had been dismantled and now they were showing their presence by attacking Rangers, police and schools. "But that doesn't mean that they will be unable to carry out major attacks. But if the crackdown against them continues, such attacks can be prevented."

March 7

A teenage suicide bomber killed at least 17 people, including six women, two children and two Policemen, and injured 23 others at a court complex in Shabqadar tehsil of Charsadda District in KP. The JuA faction of the TTP claimed the responsibility calling it the revenge for last week's hanging of Mumtaz Qadri, the self-confessed killer of former Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer. DPO Sohail Khalid said that the bomber appeared to be in his teens. "He was carrying six to eight kilogrammes of explosives in his suicide vest."

PRO DIG Saeed Wazir said that the bomber shot dead the Policeman standing guard at the gate before entering the complex where he was intercepted by two more Policemen. "In the ensuing scuffle the bomber detonated the explosives strapped to his chest," DIG Wazir said. The bomber wanted to target the judges, lawyers and police inside the courtrooms.

Three security guards sustained injuries and PKR 9 million were looted during a bank robbery within the Masti Gate Police limits in Rang Mahal Chowk area of provincial capital Lahore. The investigation officer said that the incident occurred when security guards were shifting cash in the security van from a private Bank. The injured guards were identified as Naeem, Khalid and Noor. This is the third big bank robbery in the last three months. In the second week of November 2015, robbers had looted PKR 90 million from a private bank in Gulberg and fled the scene. About PKR 4 million were looted from another private bank in Qila Gujjar Singh area.

Sindh Rangers DG Major General Bilal Akbar urged the five-member bench of the Supreme Court to allow the paramilitary force to set up its own 'police stations' as he criticized the Police for its poor investigation. "If this is done, obviously after registering FIR and conducting investigation, challans shall be filed in normal courts or Anti-Terrorism Courts established under the judicial system of Pakistan," Major General Akbar said.

Presenting a progress report before the court at its Karachi Registry, the Rangers DG said that between September 2013 and March 4, 2016, the paramilitary force had arrested 5,096 suspects who had been handed over to the Police for prosecution. Of these 168 had been convicted while 83 had been acquitted by the courts while 1,156 had been released on bail. The report, filed by Advocate Shahid Anwar Bajwa on behalf of DG Rangers, claimed that over 1,100 suspected criminals had been let off the hook over the past 18 months owing to faulty Police investigations.

March 8

The law enforcement agencies recovered Shahbaz Taseer, the abducted son of former Punjab Governor Salmaan Taseer, from Kuchlak town near Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan, five years after he was kidnapped by unidentified gunmen from Lahore. A statement released by the ISPR confirmed that the intelligence agencies have recovered Shahbaz Taseer from an area near Kuchlak. Shahbaz was kidnapped from Lahore on August 26, 2011 near his company's head office few months after the assassination of his father. A senior police official confirmed that Shahbaz was recovered during a raid jointly conducted by the Counter-Terrorism Department and intelligence agencies near Quetta. Quoting a Frontier Corps officer, a TV channel confirmed the development. "An intelligence-based operation was conducted by FC and police, resulting in his (Shahbaz) safe recovery."

The ATC in Karachi indicted 26 workers of MQM in more than 50 cases. The MQM activists were accused of possessing explosives and illegal weapons. They were arrested by Rangers during raid at MQM headquarters Nine-Zero in March 2015. The accused have pleaded not guilty. The court has summoned investigation officers and witnesses on next hearing.

March 9

At least 21 militants were killed in fresh airstrikes and ground operations in the Shawal Valley of NWA in FATA where the military is conducting the last phase of Operation Zarb-e-Azb. The military claims to have gained control of strategic positions along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border in the snow-covered mountainous regions of NWA. Administration officials said the air raids targeted hideouts of militants while ground troops were going ahead with a cleansing operation in the area. Chief military spokesman Lieutenant General Asim Saleem Bajwa wrote on Twitter that helicopter gunships carried out the strikes, which began Monday night and continued into Tuesday. "Operations continue as important heights and passes along the Pak-Afghan border are secured. The valley's sanitisation [is] in progress," he wrote on the micro-blogging website. "Ground forces continue their hunt for fleeing terrorists through chase, cordon and search operations."

Eight BLA militants, including 'commander' Aslam Achou alias Merick Baloch, were killed in an exchange of fire during an encounter with Security Forces in the Sangan area of Sibi District. Two FC personnel were also killed during the gun battle. A spokesman for the Balochistan Government, Anwar-ul-Haque Kakar, said that the BLA 'commander' Aslam Achou alias Merick Baloch was an Afghan Tajik.

The District Malir Police claimed to have shot dead three TTP terrorists in Northern Bypass area of Malir Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. According to details given by SSP Rao Anwaar, a Police team was attacked by four gunmen on motorcycles near a snap-checking picket in the Northern Bypass area. The Police retaliated and arrested three terrorists in injured condition, while the fourth one escaped. They later succumbed to their injuries. Three pistols and two motorcycles were recovered from their possession however their identities could not be ascertained immediately.

SITE Super Highway Police arrested TTP extortionist, identified as Kamran Bajouri, during an encounter in SITE Town. Bajouri used to take extortion money from traders to generate funds for the militant outfit. He said that the attack was in reaction to Bajouri's arrest.

An alleged target killer, identified as Naeem Ahmed alias Nanah, was arrested by the CTD in Korangi Town. During preliminary investigation, the accused confessed murdering people, including a person near the Inquiry Office in Korangi, during the years 2005 and 2006.

March 10

Unidentified militants kidnapped eight FDA employees while they were heading to inspect an under construction dam in Toi Khula area of SWA. "Gunmen kidnapped these eight men when they were heading to the dam site," said Islam. No outfit claimed responsibility for the abduction.

LEAs arrested 14 Afghan Taliban militants during a raid from a compound in Pashtoonabad area in provincial capital Quetta. "It is premature to say something about the arrest of any high profile leader among them", the official said. Sleeping bags, boots and administrative objects were also recovered from their possession.

The Special Police Unit of CTD arrested a woman who has been accused of facilitating the attack on September 18, 2015, on Pakistan Air Force base in Badabher area of Peshawar. "During the investigation, Zari Zadgai alias Perveen, a resident of Telabanad village, [was] arrested. She [is accused of] providing terrorists with food and supplying empty bottles to them, which were later used to assemble explosive devices," the handout added.

March 11

Lieutenant Colonel, Tariq Ghafoor, was shot dead while he was on his way to a nearby mosque to offer Friday prayers near Ring Road in Hayatabad area of provincial capital Peshawar. TTP spokesman, Muhammad Khorasani, claimed responsibility for the attack in an email sent to journalists.

A Lyari gangster, identified as Mustafa alias Lal Golden, was killed when paramilitary troops shot at him during a raid at a multi-storey building in Singu Lane area of Lyari Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Mustafa was wanted in ransom cases and targeted killings. The raid was conducted after receiving intelligence about the presence of at least three suspected gangsters. According to official details, the gangsters opened fire on paramilitary officials and tried to escape. However, one gangster was killed during an exchange of fire while his accomplices managed to escape. Automatic weapons, ammunitions and drugs were recovered from his possession.

Rangers carried out search operations in Lyari and Orangi Town and arrested 35 suspects and recovered a huge cache of ammunition, including 10 SMGs, one LMG and bullets, from their possession.

Authorities arrested 22 tribesmen in SWA of FATA in a "collective responsibility" punishment a day after eight government officials were kidnapped. Eight officials of the FDA, were kidnapped in South Waziristan on March 10, 2016. "We have arrested 22 tribesmen to put pressure for the release of the eight FDA officials as the kidnapping took place in their area and it is their collective responsibility to help authorities in the recovery," Masood Khan, a political officer, said.

The political administration of SWA has given 24 hours to the Suleman Khel and Dottani tribes to rescue nine workers. An unnamed official said that action would be taken under the FCR if the tribes failed to recover the abducted individuals. "If the deadline expires [without the rescue of kidnapped men], the political administration will launch a crackdown against both tribes," the official said, adding, "They will not be issued CNICs (Computerized National Identity Card's) and their domiciles will be suspended. Their business centres will also be shut down."

March 12

SFs arrested a suspected person in an action in Gul Kach area of Zhob and recovered arms from his possession. According to reports, SFs seized five grenades, walkie-talkie and hundreds of rounds from his possession.

March 13

Five militants were killed and one arrested during a security operation carried out by FC along with other law enforcement agencies in Dera Bugti District of Balochistan. An FC spokesman said that on a tip-off, FC teams along with other law enforcement agencies raided a place in Dera Bugti. Exchange of fire took place between FC personnel and the armed men, he said adding "five militants were killed and one arrested in Dera Bugti operation. He said that the militants killed in the operation were involved in attacks on security forces, damaging gas pipelines, extortion and kidnapping for ransom. The militants belonged to a banned militant organisation, Baloch Republican Army; he said adding that the camps of the militants were also destroyed while further probe is underway.

At least five militants were killed in an encounter with CTD forces in Nankana Sahib District of Punjab. CTD forces raided a house on a tip-off in a village and an encounter took place. During the crossfire, five terrorists were killed while two others managed to escape. Explosive material and ammunition were recovered from their possession. The identity of the suspects could not be ascertained immediately.

Police claimed to have arrested five key gangsters of Lyari gang from Dhok Kisan area of Attock District. On a tip-off, the Police headed by Regional Police Officer Fakhar Sultan raided a hideout and arrested the alleged gangsters identified as Noor Zaman, Hameed Khan, Safdar Hussain, Ansar Hussain and Ghulam Hussain. The police also impounded a cache of ammunition, bullets, four carat gold and PKR 30 million from their possession.

Two alleged terrorists linked to al Qaeda were killed during an encounter with CTD in Quaidabad area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh, on the morning. On a tip-off, CTD personnel raided a hideout and an encounter took place resulting in death of two terrorists. They were identified as Arshad and Umair who were linked to al Qaeda sub-continent chapter. Arshad had PKR five million and Umair had PKR 500, 000 head money, CTD officials said.

March 14

At least five alleged terrorists were killed in exchange of fire with the personnel of CTD in Samasata area in Bahawalpur District in Punjab. According to reports, the CTD personnel, on a tip-off, launched action in Samasata area. Exchange of fire took place at Bahawalpur overhead bridge in which five terrorists were killed. The officials also seized hand grenades and explosives from the possession of the militants, affiliated to a banned outfit.

Sindh Rangers thwarted a major terror bid by killing four terrorists in Manghopir area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh, in the night. According to Rangers spokesman, the paramilitary force, on a tip-off, raided a house in Sultanabad area, where terrorists opened fire. In retaliatory fire, four terrorists were killed. Two Rangers personnel also sustained injuries in the shootout.

An explosion occurred on early morning at a shrine located in an isolated graveyard in Athmaqam area of Neelum Valley District in PoK. The explosion caused no loss of life but Police recovered a dozen of unexploded hand grenades. Athmaqam SHO Raja Ansar Sajad said that upon a tip-off from the local villagers about the explosion at Kundal Shahi a team of police reached at the shrine of Syed Rasool Shah and recovered 12 hand grenades. He said that some unknown miscreants threw the local made hand grenades at shrine located in a graveyard early in the morning and blasts were heard in the area but no loss of life was reported as they fell in an open area.

Two AQIS militants, who were killed on March 12, 2016, in an encounter in Quaidabad area of Bin Qasim Town, were planning a suicide attack at Drigh Road Railway Station to target ordnance supply to the military, said Additional Inspector General of the CTD Dr Sanaullah Abbasi. The AQIS had done complete reconnaissance and prepared a suicide bomber and a vehicle to hit the target, as arms were being brought from the Wah ordnance factory to Karachi by train or road in a military container for their onward supply to the Malir cantonment.

Pakistani officials threatened to expel Afghan Taliban from bases in Pakistan if they did not join peace talks this month, but the militants rebuffed their traditional patron, two officials said, casting doubt on how much influence Islamabad retains over them. After the secret meetings with Pakistani officials about two weeks ago, the Taliban's Supreme Council met at an undisclosed location and voted to reject the talks scheduled for early March with the Afghan government, according to a council member. Instead, the insurgents are now pouring back into Afghanistan for what they say will be a fierce spring offensive to be launched soon. Pakistan's influence over the insurgents is the lynchpin to the peace plan developed over last few months by Afghanistan, Pakistan, the United States and China to bring an end to the 15-year-old war in Afghanistan. A Pakistani official in Islamabad said that the Taliban's recent success on the battlefield inside Afghanistan had changed the equation. “They no longer need their Pakistan bases in the same way, so if Pakistan threatens to expel them, it does not have the same effect,” said the official, a retired military officer close to the talks.

Pakistan witnessed a decrease of 34 percent in terrorism activities during the year 2015 as compared to 2014, official sources said. According to reports, incidents of terrorism reduced from 5,496 in 2014 to 3,625 in 2015 and the New Year has so far witnessed 80 percent decline in terror acts and extremism by breaking network of terrorists in FATA, Karachi and Balochistan after developing much needed consensus among the political parties. The sources said this achievement is due to the fact that all political forces clustered around National Action Plan (NAP) to take it to logical conclusion. The sources said NAP has also brought relief to the nation as the country has witnessed overall decline in heinous offences.

March 15

At least 15 persons were killed and 25 others injured when a powerful bomb ripped through a Civil Secretariat bus, carrying Government employees, near Sunehri Masjid in Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The bus was carrying Government employees from Mardan to Peshawar. SP (Cantonment Circle) Muhammad Kashif said the blast was caused by explosive material planted inside the bus.

Lakki Marwat DSP Kifayat Hussain was found dead in his official residence. An official source said the residence of the deceased police official was located in the congested urban locality. “After spending the day in office Mr Hussain had reached his residence in the evening where he was found dead in mysterious circumstances,” he added.

A Police head constable, identified as Muhammad Sarwar, and a private security guard Abdul Qayyum, were killed during a bank robbery in Kuchlak town of Quetta, the provincial capital of Sindh. At least three other security guards and a civilian were injured in the shootout. The robbers looted PKR 4 million.

Sindh Rangers along with the RTF arrested three kidnappers during a raid in Datageer area of Gulberg Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. According to the official sources, a boy, identified as Kashan (12), was abducted on March 12, 2016, while he was going to take his tuition classes on Bukhari Commercial in Darakhshan police area. The kidnappers demanded of his family to pay a ransom of PKR 10 million for his release however, it was later reduced to PKR 0.3 million. When the deal was finalised on a phone call, the kidnappers told the family to come to the Queens Road where they released the boy after receiving the ransom money.  After the family approached the RTF, it raided a house near Dastageer area and arrested one kidnapper, Adnan, who disclosed the names of his associates during an investigation. The RTF along with the accused raided a hideout in Defence Phase VIII and arrested the leader, Tafeeq Jagrani, and his other accomplice and found weapons and ransom money on them.      

The Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif confirmed death sentences of 13 ‘hardcore militants’, including one involved in the killing foreign tourists  in Nanga Parbat. According to the ISPR, the condemned terrorists were tried by military courts for their involvement in Nanga Parbat attack, Saidu Sharif airport, destruction of schools, attacks on armed forces, law enforcement agencies and civilians. Earlier on January 1, the Army Chief had confirmed death sentences for nine terrorists convicted by military courts. 

March 16

Three lady health workers of a polio team were shot at and injured by unidentified militants in Garhi Yasin area of Shikarpur District.

While addressing a press conference at the Karachi Press Club BRP Ailaaf Baloch and Afshan Baloch said that more than 70 members of the party had been missing for several months and emphasised that the situation in Balochistan could only be normalised if aspirations of Baloch people were kept supreme. They urged the authorities concerned to give their right arm to solve the simmering problem in Balochistan.

They recalled that Balochistan had plenty of natural resources, yet its people were unable to have clean drinking water, education and healthcare facilities. They pointed out that giving Baloch people their rights on a priority basis would be a huge step. They said the BRP had been raising its voice for the recovery of its members who, they claimed, were victims of enforced disappearances.

March 17

At least two soldiers and two women were killed in a suicide explosion in the Smagal area of Darel Valley in the Diamer District of the Gilgit-Baltistan region in PaK. Acting on an intelligence tipoff, SFs had laid siege to the house of a ‘commander’ of TTP’s Diamer faction, identified as Hazrat Noor. An unnamed security official disclosed, “The terrorist blew himself up to avoid arrest. Besides his wife and daughter, two soldiers were also killed in the blast.” The slain militant also reportedly had opened fire at the Forces before blowing himself up.

An exchange of fire between SFs and militants in the Gayyal village area of Tarel Valley in Diamer District resulted in five fatalities. ISPR, the media wing of the Pakistan Army, stated, “Three wanted terrorists were killed by security forces in a successful IBO [intelligence-based operation] in Tarel Valley in Gayyal Village near Chillas in Gilgit-Baltistan today. Two security personnel also embraced shahadat (martyrdom) in the exchange of fire.”

At least five terrorists were killed in an exchange of fire when militants besieged a security check post in Dara Darmodrab area of Tirah Valley in Khyber Agency of FATA. The ISPR confirmed the incident.

A 'commander' of IS, identified as Kamran Aslam Gujjar, was killed in a Police encounter in Manghopir area of Gadap Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. According to a press release issued by Sindh police, District West Police and CIA personnel, acting on a tip-off, launched a search operation in Ittehad Town area where the raiding party came under fire. One of the attackers and two policemen were severely injured during the encounter. Police claimed to have recovered a sub-machine gun, three hand grenades and explosive material from his possession.

According to the Police statement, Gujjar is a 'trained Daesh commander' who had also worked for AQIS in the past and was carrying a bounty of PKR 2.5 million on his head. The accused had also confessed to his involvement in target killings, grenade attacks and bank robberies and claimed to have recently joined Daesh.

The CTD arrested four suspected militants while distributing pamphlets of banned militant organisation on the Pajagi Road near Tableeghi Markaz in provincial capital Peshawar. The raid was conducted after receiving information from the secret agencies. The suspects were identified as Muhammad Anas, Muhammad Tayyeb, Attaullah and Syed Akbar Shah.

The CTD Mardan arrested a suspected terrorist along with explosive material from Mardan District.

Zarri Zadgai alias Perveen, the woman facilitator of the attack on PAF base in Badaber on September 18, 2015, was sent to jail after she confessed to the crime at the Anti-Terrorism Court.

The IGP Nasir Khan Durrani reiterated his pledge that extortion in the Province will be eliminated at all costs.

Balochistan Home Department announced head money for 99 militants, ranging between PKR 500,000 and PKR 15 million. CM Nawab Sanaullah Zehri vowed ‘not to pardon’ people involved in terrorist activities. The militants belong to the BLA, BRA, BLF, BRG and LeB.

But the names of Nawabzada Brahamdagh Bugti, Nawabzada Hairbyar Marri, Nawabzada Mehran Marri and Mir Javed Mengal, who are accused of instigating terrorist activities in Balochistan, have not been included in the list.  The CM said that it was not clear whether the BLF chief (Dr Allah Nazar) was dead or alive. However his name has been included in the list.

March 18

A ST cadre, identified as Muhammad Iqbal Hanif (32), was shot dead in a targeted attack when he was with his friends by a roadside near Qatar Hospital in Sector 8 area of Orangi Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. His companion remained unhurt.

Three Rangers personnel were injured when unidentified armed assailants hurled hand grenade at their check post near Korangi Crossing in Korangi Town. They were identified as Manzoor, Kalimullah and Abdul Ghafoor. Director General Sindh Rangers Major General Bilal Akbar said that the four suspects involved in the attack have been arrested but their names could not be disclosed. He said Police and Rangers were being targeted in three types of bomb attacks in Karachi by three different groups. "Groups from Lyari are involved in the first kind of attacks on Police and Rangers.  Bombs made of plastic containers are being used in the second type of attacks, which lead to suspicion that a political party might be involved. While the third type of blasts, he said, are carried out by terrorists."     

The Police and Security Forces arrested three suspected militants and seized weapons and ammunition in a joint operation in Jabar area in Usheri Darra in Upper Dir District. DPO of Upper Dir Syed Israruddin Bacha said 400 kilograms of explosive powder, four IEDs, six rocket-launchers, one LMG, one rifle, seven magazines and 200 bullets were seized. He said the operation was launched on the basis of information divulged by arrested militants Bacha Hussain and his son Farmanullah, who were arrested from Lahore District in Punjab a few days ago.

March 19

Four suspected BLA militants were killed and a senior leader of a banned organisation was injured in an encounter with SF personnel in Chattar area of Nasirabad District. The injured militant leader and 13 other suspected militants were taken into custody. According to official sources, personnel of Frontier Corps launched a search operation in the area close to Dera Bugti and Lehri Districts after a tip-off about the presence of militants.

March 20

The Sindh Police CTD chief Sanaullah Abbasi in a letter sent to the Government requested the Provincial Government to take steps to de-radicalize Karachi, including removing the flags, posters and graffiti of religious and political parties, reducing media coverage of their rallies and other gatherings, and integrating madrassas with the regular school system. “These suggestions have been prepared on the basis of research and interrogation reports of high-profile terrorism and extremism cases,” he said.

The DG of Sindh Rangers Major General Bilal Akbar while talking to a delegation of the APSSA vowed, “The Karachi operation will carry on until all criminal elements have been eliminated”. He made it very clear that the Karachi operation was not against any party or group in particular, and stressed that its purpose was to curb criminal elements in the city. He urged political and religious parties not to allow criminals or terrorists into their ranks. “In spite of a difficult situation, we are committed to protecting lives and property of people in the metropolis,” he said.

March 21

At least 12 suspected militants, including two BLA 'commanders', identified as Jamir and Baloch Khan, were killed in an exchange of fire during an operation with FC personnel in Nasau area of Kohlu District. The FC recovered large cache of arms and ammunition from their possession. "Exchange of fire is still underway".

Brother of Lyari gangster Arshad Pappu, was arrested in Hub tehsil of Lasbela District. He was identified as Hamid alias Aamir. Security Forces recovered a large quantity of illegal weapons.

Brother of Lyari gangster Arshad Pappu, was arrested in Hub tehsil of Lasbela District. He was identified as Hamid alias Aamir. Security Forces recovered a large quantity of illegal weapons.

A soldier of the Bajaur Scouts was killed when unidentified militants across the border attacked a check post with automatic weapons in Ghakhi Pass in Mamond tehsil of Bajaur Agency in FATA.

President Mamnoon Hussain during his visit in Wana, the headquarters of South Waziristan Agency said that Pakistan's armed forces were fighting a decisive war against terrorism in the tribal areas as. "Anti-state elements are out to weaken the country through subversive activities but their evil designs are being foiled by the armed forces," he said.

Unidentified militants hurled a cracker bomb at Rangers check post in Korangi Town. However, no casualties were reported. Zaman Town Police said that the explosion damaged a wall of the check post. This was the third attack on Rangers check post in the last week.

Two suspected criminals involved in blasts on railway tracks and other heinous crimes were arrested during a raid in Gohram Bugti Goth in Orangi Town. The Rangers recovered weapons from their possession.

Three suspected gangsters were arrested in Lyari Town.

An unidentified target killer, affiliated with a militant outfit, was arrested during a raid in Orangi Town.

Pakistani authorities have detained the 'chief' of a breakaway faction of the Afghan Taliban, Mullah Muhammad Rasool, claimed two unnamed Taliban leaders. They did not say when Mullah Rasool was taken into custody but confirmed that he had fled recent infighting in southern Afghanistan. "I can confirm that Mullah Rasool has been arrested by authorities in Pakistan after he crossed the border," one Taliban leader said. He declined to share details. A Taliban leader in Rasool's camp also confirmed his detention.

March 22

The CTD of Sindh Police claimed to have arrested three suspected militants, including an engineer, who were allegedly associated with the banned AQIS. "The three were identified as Usman Naeem, Umair and Imamdin alias Mavia," The CTD's Additional Inspector General Dr Sanaullah Abbasi said. "They are associated with the AQIS and were arrested after an encounter with a CTD team in Karachi West. We have also seized two AK-47 rifles and a TT pistol from their possession."

The PHC suspended the execution of a death-row inmate, who was sentenced to death by a military court for involvement in terrorism. A two member bench of the PHC, comprising Justice Mahzar Alam Main Khel and Justice Younis Thaheem, heard the application of convicted militant Bakhat Amir, staying his execution. The bench asked the Interior and Defense Ministries to submit details of the case in the next hearing. The application filed by the convict's brother prayed that Amir had surrendered himself to Security Forces in 2009 in Swat of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, after which there was no information about him. A few weeks ago the family was informed that Amir had been awarded the death sentence by a military court, his brother maintained in court.

The Supreme Court was informed that as of February 2, 2016, as many as 353 convicts had been executed since the lifting of moratorium on the death penalty by the Federal Government. The information was laid before a two-judge Supreme Court bench, headed by Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan, on behalf of the Interior Ministry by DAG Sajid Ilyas Bhatti. The report was, however, quiet about whether the executed convicts also included militants who were convicted by military courts and whose executions began soon after the Army Public School Peshawar attack on December 16, 2014.

The Supreme Court was hearing a petition filed by Barrister Zafarullah Khan of the Watan Party seeking swift disposal of appeals and petitions filed by around 7,124 inmates, currently on a death row in different prisons of the country. Zafarullah Khan said that of the cases, the Supreme Court was hearing 1,031 appeals, whereas 5,378 similar matters were pending before various high courts. At least 21 cases are awaiting adjudication before the FSC and six are with the GHQ. A brief report also stated that mercy petitions of 444 convicts had been rejected since Dec 2014 and 38 mercy petitions were pending with the Interior Ministry. A set of another 33 appeals are currently under process.

Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif said tribal elders in North Waziristan Agency in FATA were "happy" with improved security and peace and had requested the army to stay in the area till the process of reconstruction and resettlement was completed. On a visit to the tribal agency where the Army has been conducting an air and ground offensive against outlawed militants since June 2014, General Raheel claimed "good progress had been made in the Shawal operation." The Army chief also attended the earth breaking ceremony of a sports complex in the agency. He said tribal people in the area were "keen to resume a productive life," said Lieutenant General Asim Bajwa, head of the ISPR. Bajwa quoted the army chief as saying the "farthest edges of the agency [North Waziristan] were now being cleared" and that around "650 square kilometres had already been cleared in the final phase so far." The ISPR chief said General Raheel had also directed to ensure complete return of all TDPs by the end of 2016.

March 23

A former regional director of ISI was shot dead in a drive-by shooting in Phase 7 area of Hayatabad in Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Abdul Latif, who was also a professor at Qurtaba University, had gone to Phase 7 to meet his relatives when assailants on a motorcycle shot him dead, Police said. Tatara SHO Abid Afridi said Latif (61), had retired as a regional director from the ISI three years ago. During his career, Latif served on key positions, including as the first secretary in Pakistan's embassy in Afghanistan in the 90s, he added. "He was a resident of Tehkal but was on a visit to Hayatabad to meet his relatives when unknown attackers riding a motorcycle opened fire at him just outside the house, killing him on the spot," SHO Afridi added.

Unidentified motorcycle bourne assailants shot dead two Policemen in Dera Ismail Khan of same District.

Police arrested 32 suspected persons including 12 Afghans during a search operation in the Faqirabad area of Peshawar. The Police searched houses with the help of sniffer dogs and arrested several suspects, besides seizure of weapons and hashish from them.

The CTD Malakand Division arrested a suspected terrorist during a targeted operation in Matta tehsil of Swat District. According to CTD officials, the alleged terrorist identified as Bahadar Shah who was arrested during an operation by CTD in the limits of Matta Police Station. The accused Bahadar Shah was wanted by Matta Police Station as a case under section 380, 448,148, 149, and 7ATA was registered against him in 2009.

Police claimed to have killed three abductors and recovered three hostages in a joint raid carried out by SIU and CPLC in Ibrahim Haideri area of Korangi Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

Police claimed to have killed three abductors and recovered three hostages in a joint raid carried out by SIU and CPLC in Ibrahim Haideri area of Korangi Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

The Madrassa Reforms Project, which was initiated during the regime of Pervez Musharraf, is still incomplete despite the lapse of many years. Under the project, some 8,000 Islamic seminaries, about 1.6 million students and approximately 120,000 teachers of these madrassas were to be registered, but even after almost 12 years only 432 madrassas have been registered and out of them only 36 are getting funds from the Ministry of Religious Affairs.

March 25 Balochistan Home Minister Mir Sarfaraz Bugti said Operation Zarb-e-Azab was bearing fruit and Balochistan soon would become a completely peaceful region. He was addressing a ceremony held in connection with Yaum-e-Shuhada. Southern Command Commander Lieutenant General Aamir Riaz, Advisor to Chief Minister on Information Sardar Raza Muhammad Baraich, Home Secretary Cap (retd) Akbar Hussain Durrani, Balochistan Frontier Corps IG Major General Sher Afgun, Police IG Ahsan Mehboob and senior officials were present. The Minister said the Government and Security Forces have been taking practical measures to root out terrorism from Balochistan on permanent basis, adding that the sacrifices of martyrs would not go waste.
March 26

Four terror suspects were allegedly killed in an encounter with the personnel of the CTD in the Adam Wahan Village in the Lodhran District of Punjab. CTD officials had a report that up to seven suspects were hiding in the village. They raided the terrorist hideout in the Sadar Police precincts in the Lodhran District and the terror suspects threw two hand grenades at them. The CTD officials retaliated, killing four suspected terrorists at the scene. A suicide vest, a hand grenade, a rifle and other weapons were recovered from the suspects. The suspects are yet to be identified.

A polio worker and supervisor in EPI, identified as Akhtar Khan, was shot dead by an unidentified militant in his private clinic in Khuga Khel area of Khyber Agency in FATA. LI claimed responsibility for killing the EPI supervisor over telephone from an Afghan mobile number. The LI spokesman, however, did not specify as to why an EPI worker was targeted. 

Later, the Khasadar officials said that they took a local resident into custody after a son of the deceased polio worker told officials that he saw the a man, identified as Hayatullah, entering his father’s clinic and later heard gunshots being fired there. The officials took the suspect in custody for interrogation.

March 27

At least 74 people were killed and more than 300 injured when a suicide bomb ripped through the parking space in Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park situated near Allama Iqbal Town in provincial capital Lahore when Christians were celebrating Easter. JuA (Group of the Free), a breakaway faction of the TTP, claimed responsibility for the attack. "We claim responsibility for the attack on Christians as they were celebrating Easter," a spokesperson said.

ST cadres manhandled journalists in Islamabad as they gathered outside Parliament House at the Red Zone to protest against the hanging of Malik Mumtaz Qadri, the assassin of former Punjab Governor Salman Taseer. Many journalists, including cameramen, were injured.

An unidentified 22-year-old youth was killed in the firing incident by unidentified armed assailants near Ghareeb Nawaz colony in Golimar area of SITE Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

A man, identified as Noor Salim (43), was shot dead by unidentified armed assailants near Philips Company office in SITE Town.

An unidentified man was shot dead near Habib Chowrangi in SITE Town.

An unidentified suspect was killed while another one injured in an exchange of fire with Police during a raid in Saudabad area of SITE Town.

Two journalists were injured when activists of the Anjuman Talaba Islam subjected them to physical violence while attacking the Karachi Press Club with petrol bombs and resorting to arson. The assailants tried to enter the club and set vehicles on fire. Later, the attackers managed to flee the scene. According to details, the ATI activists were protesting against the hanging of Malik Mumtaz Qadri outside the Karachi Press Club when its workers attempted to enter the premises of the club. Upon failure to enter the KPC premises due to resistance, the ATI workers resorted to arson and hurled petrol bombs inside the club.

At least four suspects, identified as Sharjeel, Naveed, Dilshad and Faisal Motta, were arrested during search operation in Sachal area of Gulshan Town. The suspects were allegedly involved in extortion and street crimes. The police claimed to have recovered three pistols from their possession.

The Sindh security administration found no existence of a total of 2,096 registered seminaries on ground which they believe were brought on Government record only to collect donations and funding from different sources, Additional Inspector General of Police, CTD Dr Sanaullah Abbasi Said. This has been revealed during a recent survey jointly carried out by police’s two units namely the Special Branch and the CTD. This ongoing survey was being conducted to ascertain the number of seminaries allegedly involved in promoting extremism and sectarianism in order to keep check on their activities.

“We have detected a total of 2,096 seminaries, which on papers have been shown as registered in Sindh, but actually they are closed or are not available,” disclosed Dr Abbasi. The senior police officer described these seminaries as ‘ghost’ and said that they had been registered merely to get donations and funding from different sources.

Out of such ghost seminaries, at least 639 seminaries have been detected in Karachi Division only followed by Hyderabad (843), Mirpurkhas (192), Sukkur (364) and Larkana divisions (58). The Police Counterterrorism Unit chief pointed out that there were a total of 10,222 seminaries in Sindh.

March 28

The Police arrested Samiullah, the mastermind of the 2007 suicide attack on senior politician Aftab Sherpao during the Eid prayers that killed 67 persons, in Utmanzai town of Charsadda District.

11 Uzbeks were detained during a raid as by FC and intelligence agencies personnel in Nushki District.

A man was arrested on suspicion of having links with a banned outfit in Nushki District.

FC troops recovered 5 kilograms of explosive material from Goth Hazaro area of Sui in Dera Bugti District.

CoAS General Raheel Sharif during a high-level meeting in Rawalpindi ordered intelligence-based operations against terrorists in Punjab and made it clear that these operations will not be “joint actions” as conducted in the past along with the Police and Provincial Intelligence Agencies. The overnight operations, which the army chief is personally monitoring, were conducted by army units, paramilitary Rangers, the ISI and MI personnel. He ordered crackdowns against militants with the focus on finding linkages and perpetrators of the attack. Subsequently the military conducted several raids in Lahore, Faisalabad, Muzaffargarh and other Districts. One of the operations reportedly lasted for over five hours and yielded several arrests.

The US has helped Pakistan in securing its nuclear weapons and materials, US Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Nonproliferation Thomas Countryman said, ahead of the Nuclear Security Summit to be held in Washington on March 30, 2016. "Without question, Pakistan takes very seriously its responsibility to provide security for both nuclear weapons and nuclear materials. As a consequence of the summit process as well as our bilateral co-operation they have taken important steps forward in providing that security," he said.

Hundreds of ST cadres spearheading support for Malik Mumtaz Qadri, a police guard hanged for assassinating Punjab Governor Salman Taseer, demanded Sharia’h in Pakistan and declaration of Qadri as a national martyr. The Tehreek's demands included conversion of Qadri's jail cell into a national heritage site, the execution of blasphemy accused Aasia Bibi in whose support Taseer had stood, guaranteeing that the blasphemy laws will not be amended, and the removal of Ahmadis and other non-Muslims who have occupied key Government positions.

Police registered four separate cases against 501 religious workers, including their leadership, under the ATA for creating terror and violence in society and formally arrested those booked in Rawalpindi District during clashes between workers of religious parties and police on March 27. “Yes, cases have been registered against the protesters, including their leadership who were involved in violence, under Anti-Terrorism Act,” City Police Officer Israr Ahmed Abbasi said.

March 29

Five terrorists were killed and over 600 suspects were arrested in an extensive operation launched by the SFs across the Province following March 27, 2016, suicide attack in Lahore. According to details provided by private TV channels, five terrorists, belonging to a banned militant group, were killed in separate shootouts with during search operations in Rajanpur District and Muzaffargarh District. In addition, 250 suspects were detained in Sialkot District, 200 in Gujranwala, 80 in Faisalabad, 34 in Rahimyar Khan, 18 in Kasur, 10 in Bhakkar, six in Attock and one in Bahawalpur, while several others were also arrested from other Districts of the province.

One of the main leaders of protesters, identified as Pir Muhammad Afzal Qadri, at Islamabad’s D-Chowk has been on the Fourth Schedule of ATA for over a year, yet he made his way to the capital unhindered. Afzal Qadri is the chief of Aalmi Tanzeem Ahl-e Sunnat. Sources in the District Government and Police said that around two months ago authorities had besieged Qadri’s residence and seminary in Mararrian village and stopped him from marching to Lahore to press the Government against executing Malik Mumtaz Qadri, the assassin of former Punjab Governor Salman Taseer.

A Shia Special Security Unit (SSU) commando, identified as Zahid Jaffri (31), who had been doing security duty, at the State Guest House was shot dead in the Kareemabad area of Gulberg Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.  According to DIG of Police (West) Feroz Shah, Jaffri was deployed at the State Guest House where President Mamnoon Hussain would stay during his visit to Karachi.

A gangster belonging to Uzair Baloch gang, identified as Muhammad Ashraf (32), was shot dead by a gangster of Baba Ladla rival group outside his residence on Daryabad Street in Lyari Town. Arshad belonged to Uzair Baloch gang and was killed by a member of Baloch’s rival group run by.

One Arshad (23), was shot at and injured in a firing incident near Sherpao Colony in Landhi Town.

A man, identified as Tanveer (25), was shot at and injured near Naz Plaza on MA Jinnah Road.

The death toll of March 27, 2016, suicide blast in Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park of Lahore rose to 74 after two more injured persons succumbed to their injuries. The victims were identified as Anas Ayub (17) and Moshin (18). The 74 dead include 29 children and 10 women 20 Christians.

Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah while addressing a press conference on Lahore claimed that there are no safe havens, organised terrorist networks or any no-go areas in any part of the Province. He said that civil-military agencies were carrying out the operation across the Province under the continuing NAP. He said the military crackdown on terrorist activities in Punjab was a national operation and the country’s entire political leadership, religious parties, opposition and the Government were backing the crackdown. He further said, “As 5,221 people were initially rounded up from different parts of Punjab out of which 5,005 have been released after verification of their documents,” adding, “However, 216 suspects are still under custody for further investigation.” Regarding investigations in the attack, he said that a JIT has been formed to probe the incident, which will be headed by the SSP CTD.

JuA, the breakaway faction of the TTP, warned the Government that the Lahore terror attack was a "message" to the Government about their "arrival" in Punjab. "Also, this is a message to the Pakistani Prime Minister that we have arrived in Punjab," the group's spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan said.

The spokesman even taunted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Twitter. "After the Lahore attack, Nawaz Sharif repeated old words to give himself false assurances," he wrote. "Nawaz Sharif should know that war has reached his doorstep, and God willing the Mujahideen will be the winners in this war."  In a post in Urdu on its Facebook page, the group released the bomber's photo, identifying him as Salahuddin Khorasani. "The Christians, Jews, and Zoroastrians in Pakistan have neither converted to Islam nor paying Jizya. Under these circumstances, Christians, Hindus, etc, are not at peace, nor are their places of worship safe," it said.

March 30

At least five terrorists were killed in an encounter with CIA Nawankot Police in LDA Avenue Society of Jubilee Town Chung area in provincial capital Lahore. The CIA claimed to have recovered two Kalashnikovs, three pistols, 10 grenades, 10 time devices and maps from the their possession.  CIA Nawankot Sub Inspector Khalid Farooqi raided a house on information about the presence of terrorists in house where Police cordon off the area. Police said the suspects opened fired on police party and there was an exchange of fire that lasted for one and a half hour.

Two terrorists, identified as Mehmood and Rab Nawaz, convicted by military courts for involvement in attacks on security officials and civilians were executed at a jail in Kohat District. The ISPR in September last year issued the names of nine ‘hardcore terrorists’ whose death sentences had been approved by the Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif. The convicts executed today were among them.

Mehmood belonged to the TTP and was found involved in attacking security personnel in the Province, killing two soldiers and injuring 13 others. Rab Nawaz also belonged to the TTP and was involved in killing of two civilians, processing firearms and abetting attack on military in Peshawar which resulted in death of two soldiers.

Seven houses of alleged militants and their facilitators were razed to the ground by a lashkar from Ahmedzai Wazir tribe in different areas of Wana town in SWA of FATA. The houses of Ghulam Jan and his relatives were demolished in Shalam Dana and those of Toor Hafiz and Wari Khan in Shin Warsak. The houses of Gul Mir in Tiarza and Sattar Khan and his cousin in Samar Bagh were also razed to the ground. The accused terrorists belonged to the Hakimullah and Maulvi Nazir groups of the banned TTP.

According to sources, the decision to demolish the houses was taken by a 120-member jirga after “proofs” of the suspects’ involvement in terrorist activities were obtained through an investigation.

An ATC handed down Muhammad Hussain 18 years and Ahmad Shah alias Mehdi four years imprisonment for possessing explosive materials and unlicensed weapons among other charges.

An alleged terrorist, Muhammad Imran Saeed, was remanded to the Rangers for a 90-day period to interrogate over charges of involvement in target killings and other crimes.

Three suspected terrorists, Usman Naeem, Syed Muhammad Umar alias Talha and Imamuddin, were sent to the central prison on a judicial remand after the court was informed that the accused were activists of a banned terrorist outfit and had carried out terrorist activities.

The US has “a very solid cooperation” on nuclear security with Pakistan and plans to continue this collaboration, said US Under-Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Rose Gottemoeller during the fourth and final Nuclear Security Summit in Washington. She also said that Pakistan now “has quite a mature capability” of defending its nuclear weapons and installations. “We have a very solid cooperation with Pakistan on nuclear security” and the country “has quite a mature capability now”, she said when asked to spell out US concerns on Pakistan’s nuclear program. She pointed out that Pakistan had developed its own Nuclear Security Centre of Excellence in recent years and the US continued to work with the Pakistanis on the nuclear security front.

She, however, identified one cause of concern, the deployment of tactical nuclear weapons, but clarified that this concern was not focused on Pakistan alone. “Our concerns regarding the continuing deployment of battlefield nuclear weapons by Pakistan relate to a reality of the situation: When battlefield nuclear weapons are deployed forward, they can represent an enhanced nuclear security threat,” she said. “It’s more difficult to sustain positive control over systems that are deployed forward. We found this lesson ourselves out in Europe during the years of the Cold War.” “Wherever battlefield nuclear weapons exist, they represent particular nuclear security problems,” she said.

March 31

At least five people were killed and several others injured when a blast occurred inside a vehicle on Kashmir Road in Jani Khel area of Lakki Marwat District in KP. DPO Lakki Marwat Ali Akbar said the people were travelling from North Waziristan to Lakki Marwat when a blast occurred in their vehicle. “Initial reports suggest that the bomb was planted on the vehicle,” he said. However, the exact nature of the blast is yet to be ascertained.

The CTD arrested a target killer of banned outfit and recovered arms near Charsadda Bus Terminal in Peshawar, the provincial capital of KP. CTD sources said that reacting to an intelligence tip-off regarding presence of terrorist, operation was conducted near Charsadda Bus Terminal during which an alleged target killer of banned outfit was arrested. The detainee identified as Shahidullah hailing from Agha Mir Jani locality of Peshawar was involved in attacks on police, incidents of target killings and other crimes. A 9MM pistol was also recovered from his possession.

Two Lyari gangsters were killed in a Police encounter in Moachko area of Baldia Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Police said on a tip-off police launched an action in the area. Over a hundred Police personnel took part in the operation where they used armoured personnel carriers. The accused opened fired at the Police when they entered the area, police said. In the shootout, two Lyari gangsters identified as Shahbaz and Shakeel alias Commando were shot dead. Shahbaz belonged to the Uzair Baloch group while Shakeel belonged to the Baba Ladla group, Police added.

April 1

An ASI, identified as Shakeel, was shot at and injured by unidentified armed assailants the Lasbela bridge located in Lasbela locality in Liaquatabad Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

Sindh Rangers conducted a series of raids in different areas of the city and arrested 21 alleged criminals, including 13 terrorists, affiliated with proscribed groups.  A spokesman said weapons were found on those arrested.  According to details, Rangers personnel conducted raids in Saddar Town and Lyari Town and arrested three gangsters involved in extortion and target killings. In other raids in Jahangir Town, Orangi Town and Ranchore Line, five criminals, including target killers and extortionists, affiliated with a notorious militant wing, were arrested.  Elsewhere, Rangers arrested three terrorists of banned outfits in Manghopir area of Gadap Town and Landhi Town.

ATC released seven accused due to the non-availability of evidences against them in a cases pertaining to attack on KPC. The Police submitted the report of 497 (2) CRPC to the administrative judge of ATC stating concrete evidences against the above-mentioned accused. The Police report stated that the witnesses also did not identify the accused persons. While accepting the Police report, the court released all the accused.

Karachi law enforcers in a report identified according to reports, as many as six wings of TTP that are on the verge of being active by establishing 'Special Task Force' to target Police and Rangers personnel. SFs have alerted all the Departments and claimed that TTP has started assigning missions to their workers against security officials. The law enforcers said that a chain of raids is already underway on the identification of arrested terrorists. However, the militants also leveled rare revelations during investigation.

An intelligence agency with the help of local police arrested an alleged terrorist wanted by Karachi Police in acts of terrorism and attacks on security personnel from Bazidkhel area of Kohat District in KP. The District security branch got the information that a wanted terrorist was present in a house in Bazidkhel area. He was hiding since 2012 and declared proclaimed offender by Karachi Police. The alleged terrorist, identified as Mohammad Iqbal was arrested in a raid on the house. He was also wanted to Police in a murder case of Policemen and the Sindh Government had issued his arrest warrants.

An anti-terrorism court remanded a suspected target killer into the CTD custody for 10 days on charges of murdering a former intelligence official. Abdul Latif was a former ISI regional head and was shot dead on March 22 in Hayatabad in the city. Haris Naseem, his nephew who was arrested on March 31, also recorded his statement before special judge Salim Jan Khan and revealed the name of his accomplice. Officials requested the court to remand the suspect into physical custody for interrogation. The judge accepted the plea and handed Naseem over to CTD.

SFs have killed 92 militants, including a key 'commander', and have conducted 417 targeted operations in the province during the last four months, said Balochistan Home Minister Mir Sarfaraz Bugti. “Security forces in the province have also seized more than 10,000 kilograms of explosives and other arms and ammunition,” said Bugti. He added that during the last four months, 22 FC personnel have been killed and 65 others have been injured.

Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Zehri during a session of Balochistan Assembly denied that military operation is being carried out in any part of the Province by the Federal Government and said that SFs under the Provincial Government were only conducting targeted operations wherever required. “The Provincial Government itself is conducting operations against terrorists,” he said.

The State of Human Rights in 2015, an annual report by the HRCP issued, pointed out those provinces continued to use expanded legislative authority under the 18th Constitutional Amendment to enact several important laws, but implementation mechanism lagged behind. The report stated that the parliament made 20 laws, while the president promulgated 12 ordinances during the last year. On the other hand, the provincial legislatures adopted 120 laws with highest legislative output (40) by KP, followed by Sindh (32), Punjab (31) and Balochistan (17). Important legislation included Sindh Commission on the Status of Women Act, Balochistan Prevention and Control of Thalassaemia Act, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Prohibition of Employment of Children Act. Sindh and Punjab adopted laws with regard to employment of physically challenged citizens.

The legislation was also adopted to set up eight universities across Pakistan while laws were enacted to regulate the conduct of local government elections in all the provinces, in the federal capital and in cantonments. The 21st Constitutional Amendment and corresponding amendments to the Army Act 1952 gave military courts jurisdiction to try all persons, including civilians and juveniles, in offences related to terrorism under military tribunals.

Last year, 324 people, most with no links to terrorism, being put to death by the state. Another 8,000 prisoners stayed on death row. The report said there was significant positive change in application and opinion of the judiciary, in cases of blasphemy law. “Dispensation of justice remained protracted with 2,700 cases pending before the Supreme Court and 60,000 each in Lahore and Sindh high courts, and 9,000 cases in Balochistan and 28,487 in Peshawar high court,” it said.

The report revealed a 40 percent decrease in violence as compared to 2014. In 2015, 4,612 people died in violence as compared to 7,622 violence-related deaths last year. Anti-state violence dropped below 2008 levels: 706 militant attacks took place, in which 1,325 people including 619 civilians, 348 security forces personnel, 325 militants and 33 pro-government razakars were killed. HRCP noted killing of 2,108 men and seven women through police encounters across Pakistan.

Punjab reported 382,932 cases of crime in 2015, 6,622 less than 389,554 cases in 2014. Sindh saw a 42 percent reduction in the number of murders in 2015 as compared to 2014. KP and Balochistan witnessed 10 and one percent surge respectively in total crime in 2015 as compared to 2014. The report also stated that five doctors and three lawyers were killed because of their faith. In 2015, 419 persons were awarded the death penalty while 327 death penalty convicts were hanged, making Pakistan one of the highest executing states in the world.

About 1,390 cases of enforced disappearance remained pending with the commission of inquiry. The HRCP data suggested that least 151 cases of disappearances were reported in Balochistan between January and November 2015. Amid reforms, about 65,000 names were removed from the exit control list (ECL) during the last year. In March, some Baloch activists were restricted from travelling to the United States to attend a seminar. Subsequently, Farzana Majeed and Mama Qadeer were removed from the ECL by orders of the Sindh High Court. The report also revealed that attacks on buses and killing and abduction of passengers restricted freedom of movement of certain ethnic and sectarian groups.

April 2

The Inspector General FC Balochistan Major General Sher Afgun said Indian spy agency RAW and Afghan intelligence agencies were involved in militancy and terrorism in the province. Talking to media, he said Indian consulates in Afghanistan are involved in random acts of terrorism in Balochistan. He said security situation has improved in the province as a result of targeted operations. He said the enemy was traced out and defeated due to good interaction and cooperation of people with security forces. He said that peace has been restored and now there is no “No Go Area” in Balochistan.

Police killed four suspected militants in an encounter in Quaidabad area of Bin Qasim Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Malir Senior SSP Rao Anwar said that contingents of Police, acting on a tip-off provided by held suspects, conducted targeted raid on an alleged hideout of the militants. On seeing the Police, the suspects resorted to firing and during exchange of fire, four of them were killed.

Pakistan Rangers Sindh arrested a target killer, identified as Najeeb Alam. A Rangers statement said Najeeb Alam was produced before the Anti-Terrorist Court. The Court sent him for 90 days remand to Rangers for interrogation. The accused during initial interrogation has admitted burning to death lawyers at Tahir Plaza in 2008.

April 3

Since the last phase of Operation Zarb-e-Azb kicked off in February 27, at least 252 militants have been killed and 160 severely injured, while SFs have cleared 640 square kilometres of so far uncontrolled area in Shawal Valley of NWA in FATA, the ISPR said in a statement. Major terrorist hubs in Mana, Gurbaz, Lataka, Inzarkas and Magrotai areas have been cleared of militants, the ISPR said. “The battle to clear the last pocket close to the Pak-Afghan border continues,” it said, adding that all heights over 9,000 feet have been cleared. “Terrorists’ hideouts were destroyed, a cache of arms and ammunition seized and there was virtually no communication infrastructure remaining in the Shawal area once the operation was launched in February this year,” the statement said.

In a joint operation, conducted by Army, Rangers and Police, as many as 25 suspected terrorists, were detained from 34/2L (Balochan wali) village in Okara District and illegal weapons recovered from their possession. The weapons recovered included three Kalashnikoves, 3 8MM rifles, two 303 bore rifles, one 30 bore pistol and 1000 bullets. Besides, five motorcycles and cell phones were also seized.

April 4

Feroze Shah, the personal assistant to MQM leader Mohammad Ateeq, his daughter Tasbiha (8), and a city warden, Abid, were killed in a targeted attack while they were travelling in a van that looked like a Police vehicle near Furniture Market in North Karachi Town of Sindh.

Mullah Omar's elder son, Mullah Mohammad Yaqoob, has been 'appointed' as the in-charge of Afghan Taliban's 'Military Commission' in 15 of Afghanistan's 34 Provinces, the group said in a statement. The 'Military Commission' is responsible for overseeing all military affairs of the Taliban and is headed by Mullah Ibrahim Sadr. In addition to being handed the key military position, he has also been included in Taliban's top decision-making council, the Rehbari Shura. The Taliban have also inducted Mullah Abdul Manan, Mullah Omar's brother and Yaqoob's uncle, into the leadership council. The statement added that both Yaqoob and Manan had formally assumed their offices at a meeting of Taliban leaders, members of the leadership council and senior 'commanders'.

April 5

Unidentified militant shot dead an IDP, identified as Musa Khan, from North Waziristan Agency of FATA in Tanzeem Bazaar within the limits of Basiakhel Police Station in Bannu District.

An IDP, identified as Dure Kamil, was shot dead by unidentified armed assailants while he was on his way home in Jhandokhel area within the limits of Township Police Station in Bannu District.

One 19-year old Nadar Khan was shot dead within the limits of Basiakhel Police Station in Bannu District.

A Policeman, identified as Ali Badshah, was shot dead by unidentified armed assailants while he was on his way to attend his duty near an Imambargah in Bannu District.

Police arrested two alleged militants, identified as Muhammad Zeb and Hairan Zada, and recovered arms and explosives from their possession in Sardaryab area of Charsadda District. Zeb belongs to Mohmand Agency while Hairan Zada is an Afghan national.

Two passengers of Quetta-bound Jaffar Express were killed and five others were injured when a bomb hit at a railway track near Mithri area of Sibi District. "It was an IED which was detonated by a remote control. The blast blew up a major portion of the track," Railway Police said.

Six robbers looted PKR eight million from Dubai Islamic Bank in Meena Bazaar area of Korangi Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. This was Karachi's fifth bank heist this year.

Police detained six suspects during a search operation in Lines Area locality of Jamshed Town. The detained suspects are accused of violent acts during a political party's rally.

Sindh Police chief AD Khowaja decided to empower the CTD to register cases of terrorism incidents at its own three designated Police Stations so as to make the fight against terrorists more effective. Additional Inspector General Sanaullah Abbasi, who heads the CTD, said that the proposal to authorise the CTD to lodge FIRs of terror attacks was floated in the meeting after the Provincial Police Chief was informed that Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were also following the same process. According to the notification issued by IGP Khowaja, all cases pertaining to sabotage activities, including exploding railway tracks, gas pipelines and electricity towers, suicide bombing (except minor cases of cracker attacks) and target killings of law enforcers would be registered at the CTD Police Stations and investigations would be conducted by the heads of the Police Stations.

The first analysis report of the PFSA about the identity of the suspected suicide bomber indicates that Khorasani group - the JuA - an offshoot of TTP, was behind the March 27, 2016, Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park attack. The PFSA was engaged by the CTD after a damaged head of the suspected suicide bomber was found at the site of the blast.

"After performing morphological analysis for forensic image comparison it was concluded that the "ear" seen in the questioned photo matches with the "ear" seen in the reference photo", the PFSA's report disclosed, further stating, "The forensic image comparison was inconclusive for other facial features due to extremely damaged condition of facial features in the questioned photograph."

JeM 'chief' Maulana Masood Azhar was allowed to preach extremist ideology at several British mosques during a month-long visit to UK in 1993 on the invitation of Islamist scholars when young Muslims were asked to seek weapons training at terrorist camps in Pakistan, said BBC Investigation report. According the investigation, senior representatives of the Deobandi sect that controls nearly half of Britain's 1,600 mosques, hosted Azhar during the visit in which hundreds of young Muslims were urged to seek weapons training at terrorist camps in Pakistan. During his UK tour - until now kept under wraps - Azhar delivered "sermons on jihad" to large audiences in London, Birmingham, Yorkshire and Lancashire and the message was of hatred for Christians, Jews and Hindus. Witnesses said that large sums of money were donated after each talk.

April 6

SFs claimed to have killed 15 militants during a raid in Johan area of Kalat District in Balochistan. Two SFs were injured in the operation. The SFs recovered a large cache of arms and ammunition, and destroyed two sanctuaries used by the militants, said Government spokesperson Anwarul Haq Kakar.

Six TTP militants belonging to belonging to the Ustad Aslam faction were killed in an encounter conducted by CTD near Tallat Park in Kachi Abadi Sherakot area of provincial capital Lahore. A CTD spokesperson said that weapons and explosives were also recovered, including "four to five kilograms of explosives, four detonators, two Kalashnikov rifles, three motorcycles, four pistols, and 97 bullets." He further added that the Police "received information that nine to ten suspects of the banned TTP". "They were planning to attack law enforcement agencies' offices and prominent personalities in Lahore," said the CTD spokesperson.

An ISPR statement said, "Coordinated operations are underway against terrorists, hardened criminals and ferraris by law enforcement agencies including Rangers, Punjab police, CTD, assisted by Pakistan army in southern Punjab". The statement added that the terrorists have fled from different parts of the country as a result of operation Zarb-e-Azb, and have taken refuge in the remote areas of Rohjan and District Rahim Yar Khan. The operation is being looked after by Corp Commander Lahore, Lieutenant General Sadiq Ali, with army troops, Punjab Police, CTD and Rangers participating.

Two Islamic State (IS/ also known as Daesh) militants, as Mohammad Mujahid alias Talha and Abdullah alias Kuna, were killed in a an exchange of fire with the CTD of Police in Gulshan-e-Maymar area of Gadap Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. SSP Junaid Shaikh said that the raid yielded a huge cache of arms and ammunition. The Daish operatives were said to be planning major terror attacks in Karachi. "They were planning attacks on consulates of different countries in Karachi. They also planned targeting shopping malls and sensitive installations," SSP Shaikh said. According to details, Mujahidullah was a key player for Daesh in Karachi and carried a head money of Rs1 million. He was earlier associated with the LeJ and the TTP but he swore allegiance to IS while serving as 'cook' of Daesh leader Jahanzeb in Buner District of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

Three people sustained injuries when Lyari gangsters threw an explosive device in Kaghzi Bazaar of Kharadar area in Saddar Town. Shopkeepers said that lately they had been receiving threats for payment of extortion and the incident could be linked with it. An unnamed Police Officer said that gangsters linked with Lyari were involved in the attack. The officer added that one known figure of the Uzair Baloch gang had recently returned from Muscat and was living somewhere in the city though not in Lyari. This gangster had started criminal activities in the old city areas recently "to make their presence felt" after arrest of their ringleader Uzair Baloch, the Police Officer added.

More than two dozen IS-inspired militants have been found operating and planning some major terror attacks in the metropolis, said an officer of the CTD of Police. "There are 25 IS-inspired militants operating in the metropolis. They are planning to target foreign missions, law enforcers and shopping centres," said CTD SSP Junaid Shaikh. When asked about the Federal Minister of Interior Nisar Chaudhry Ali Khan's denial of the presence of IS, the officer said the militants were 'ideologically' linked with the IS and remained in contact with the Middle East-based outfit through social media only. "Previously, these militants belonged to the banned LeJ, TTP and al Qaeda but now they have jumped on the IS or Daesh bandwagon," the officer added.

Three death row prisoners, including two brothers, were hanged till death in Kot Lakhpat Jail in Lahore. The dead bodies were handed over to their families after completing legal formalities. The hanged persons have been identified as Imran, Nauman and Raheel. Police said Imran and Nauman, two real brothers, had killed one Awais in Islamabad in 1996. They were convicted in 1997.

The third convict had killed a man in Dera Ghazi Khan District.

The GoC Malakand Division Major General Nadir Khan said "The militants have been defeated and durable peace restored in the region after tremendous sacrifices by forces and the people". "The security forces have completed the job of breaking the militants' network and restoration of peace in Malakand," he added.

PAF wants to upgrade its ageing fleet of fighter jets in anticipation of a prolonged battle against militants, although the purchase of fifth-generation planes would only be a last resort, PAF second-in-command Muhammad Ashfaque Arain said in an interview. "Our concern is that we don't know how long these anti-terrorist operations will continue," he said, adding, "We have weakened them (militants) to a great extent, but I don't see an end in the very near future, so all the burden is being shared by the F-16s and its pilots."

April 7

SFs repulsed an attack on a checkpost in the Mangora Sar area on the Pak-Afghan border in Kurram Agency of FATA, killing around 18 militants in the subsequent clash. Sources said that a group of 50-60 militants stormed a security checkpost in the Mangora Sar area with heavy arms early in the day. The SF personnel manning the checkpost returned the fire and 18 militants were killed in the ensuing gunbattle. Six militants were also injured in the clash which continued for quite some time. The SFs forced the militants to retreat, leaving behind their weapons and ammunition. However, they said the fleeing militants took along their injured accomplices.

The FDMA will begin the third phase of the return of internally displaced persons to five FATA agencies. An official concerned said that around 84,553 displaced families would go back to their homes in the third phase to be completed by the end of August. He said under the plan, the authority was starting the programme of the IDPs' return to Orakzai Agency from April 11 and that 15,553 families would be facilitated to go back to their homes. The official said 22,000 families would be repatriated to North Waziristan, 30,000 families to South Waziristan, 12,000 families to Kurram and 5,000 families to Khyber Agency.

Three Shias were shot dead in a sectarian attack at the Najaf Imambargah in North Karachi Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. SSP Central Investigation Arab Mahar said, "The victims were riding a motorbike and were attacked near Shafiq Mor".

A Policeman was killed while two others - a civilian and a Police official - were injured in a roadside blast in Badhu Samar Bagh area of Peshawar, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. SSP, Operations, Abbas Majeed Marwat said initial reports revealed a remote detonator had been used to detonate the device. Faqirabad ASP Waseem Riaz said two policemen were patrolling the area on foot when the device went off. "A policeman was killed," he said. "Another policeman [and a civilian] were injured." he said. Around 500 to 750 grammes of explosives used in attack. The deceased was identified as Saeed, a police constable who hails from Mathra, while the injured civilian was identified as Ihsanullah. Another Policeman sustained minor injuries.

The Peshawar CTD arrested an alleged Afghan terrorist, identified as Ismail, during a search operation in provincial capital Peshawar. CTD said that the suspect was wanted in an IED attack on a cycle rally on January 24, 2016.

Police arrested an alleged arms trafficker and recovered a huge cache of arms from him in Saddar Police Station area of Bannu town in the same District. DSP Inayat Ali Shah said that the Police received information that arms traffickers were planning to smuggle a huge cache of arms to Bannu. The Police, he said, put the security on high alert and established various checkpoints on the entry and exit points. 59 Kalashnikovs, 164 pistols, two repeaters and 48,000 cartridges were recovered from a truck and arrested an arms trafficker.

The LeT founder and JuD chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed has set up a Sharia'h court in provincial capital Lahore to dispense "speedy justice", taking up citizens' complaints and issuing summons carrying a warning of strict action in case of non-compliance. This is the first such parallel judicial system in Pakistan's Punjab province. The JuD claimed the court only offers arbitration and resolves disputes in accordance with the Islamic judicial system, but failed to justify the summons. The court has been established at the organisation's headquarters, Jamia Qadsia, Chauburji, under a Qazi (judge) assisted by Khadmins or court associates. "The complaints are addressed to the chief of the religious organisation who later refers them to the Qazi for further proceedings," the report said.

April 8

A low intensity blast caused panic near in Nar Haideran village in Naurang town of Lakki Marwat District in KP. However, no casualties were reported. "The law enforcers also launched search operation in the area but there are no reports about any arrests," said an unnamed official source.

JuD clarified that that it has complete trust in the judicial system of the country and the Arbitrary Council, Darul Qaza Sharia, established by it merely provides arbitration services to consenting parties in the light of the Quran and Sunna. "The arbitrary council is not a parallel court and does not issue any kind of summons or seek money for arbitration," the JuD clarified.

April 9

SFs claimed to have killed 34 suspected militants, including a key 'commander' in Kalat District of Balochistan. One SF official was killed while two others sustained injuries during the exchange of fire. Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti in a press conference said "A key militant commander, Abdul Nabi Bangulzai, was also among the dead. Abdul Nabi was involved in the assassination of Balochistan High Court Justice Nawaz Marri in 2000." The operation was launched by personnel of SF and intelligence agencies against elements involved in target killings and bombings in the Johan area of Kalat District. SFs also recovered a large amount of arms and ammunition from the militants, and Bugti added that those killed were also involved in attacking passengers in the Mastung area of the Province.

The CTD and Police, in a joint action, killed at least three militants in Khanewal District of Punjab. The fourth terrorist detonated his explosive vest killing himself on the spot. The Police and CTD, on a tip-off, carried out joint action and exchange of fire took place near Lakhi Tibbi Adda. Two to three others managed to flee taking advantage of the darkness. CTD sources said the terrorists were affiliated to TTP and Al Qaeda and were plotting to target sensitive installations in Multan. The law enforcers recovered suicide jackets, two pistols and automatic rifle from the possession of the militants.

April 10

ANP local leader Syed Jamshaid Ali was shot dead by unidentified assailants in Manglore area of Swat District in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. According to Police, two unidentified men approached Jamshaid Ali when he was present at the site of an under-construction school building at Telegram. "One of the attackers met him and the other opened fire, killing him on the spot," said Manglore Station House Officer Fayaz Khan.

Police arrested four AQIS terrorists after a shootout near Jehnagir Park within the limits of Preedy Police Station area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. According to details, the four terrorists opened fire at a Police mobile near Jehnagir Park. Police chased and arrested them after shootout. Police claimed the arrested terrorists are affiliated with AQIS. Weapons including four SMGs and a motor cycle were recovered from them. Preedy Station House Officer Kamal Naseem said that all four terrorists are educated and residents of Karachi.

Three abductors were killed and one abducted child was rescued in a Police encounter in the Eastern Bypass area of the provincial capital Quetta. The kidnapped boy was identified as Aimal Khan (12). The Quetta Deputy Inspector General of Police, Syed Imtiaz Shah said that the kidnappers had demanded PKR 200,000 as ransom for the release of Aimal. According to details, Police raided a house in the Rind Garh area of Eastern Bypass area. During the raid, the kidnappers opened fire on police, triggering a heavy exchange of gunfire which continued for an hour. "The kidnappers were using an Afghan SIM for calling parents of the kidnapped boy," Shah said, adding that the kidnappers had links with criminals in Afghanistan. The kidnappers killed in the encounter were identified as Ghulam Ahmed, Fazlur Rehman and Shakir.

April 11

At least nine terrorists were killed in military air strikes in Barmand area of North Waziristan Agency in FATA.

An activist of the MQM was shot dead in a target killing incident while he was sitting at a tea hotel in Sector 8/B of North Karachi Town in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

The CTD announced the arrest of three female suicide bombers near the Lahore Road area in Sargodha District. The officials claimed to have recovered two suicide jackets and three hand grenades from their possession, said to a CTD statement. While conducting a raid in the Bypass Sem Nala area, CTD officials were shot at by two attackers, the statement said, adding that CTD officials fired back in self-defense. The attackers fled and three female suspects were arrested while trying to escape, the CTD added.

The process to repatriate displaced families to SWA in FATA started amid protests by journalists against how they were treated during the recent visit of Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra. The repatriation will continue till May 14, 2016. Officials said that at least 100 families were repatriated to Manzakai, Raghzai and Kat Kai villages on the first day. Around 20 hubs (points) have been set up at the camp for the verification of the displaced families. They added in the first phase, at least 7,348 families will be repatriated to 39 villages of SWA.

Each family was provided PKR 25,000 as well as PKR 10,000 for transportation and other costs. They were also provided with six months of ration to help them settle in their native villages. When contacted, a member of a displaced family Haji Muhammad informed, "Though, I don't know the condition of my house, I am happy to go back after seven years." He added, "We faced a difficult time as IDPs and were living in a rented house. Now, I want to [go back]."

An inquiry Commission, led by Chief Justice of Pakistan Anwar Zaheer Jamali, ruled out the involvement of the ISI in the attack on journalist Hamid Mir on April 19, 2014, in Karachi. The 41-page report observed that allegations on ISI's possible involvement in the attack were based on 'suspicions, assumptions or apprehensions'.

After investigating the incident for nine months, the inquiry commission drafted a report which stated that, prima facie, there was a tug of war among some journalists and the ISI, because some media persons had told the commission that the spy agency was unhappy with their reporting. The report also observed that there was a complete failure on the part of law enforcement agencies to investigate the attack. It mentioned that CCTV footage viewed during in-camera proceedings of the commission clearly showed two individuals at Karachi airport behaving in a suspicious manner at the time of Mir's arrival. Despite this, law enforcement agencies were unable to catch actual culprits, it added.

April 12

The TTP militants killed DSP Shangla Muhammad Ilyas and injured two police officer's' guards in Sabzi Mandi area of Mingora in Swat District. TTP spokesperson Muhammad Khorasani claimed responsibility for the attack in an email sent to journalists.

Sindh Rangers detained five suspects, including four affiliated with a political party, for 90 days, after informing ATC about their preventive detention for questioning. The Rangers along with its counsel produced the suspects belonging to a political party, Naveed Anwar, Abdullah Mehtab, Nadir and Muhammad Asif alias Dunba, before the administrative judge of ATC amid tight security. The fifth suspect was identified as Muhammad Muneer.

The paramilitary force submitted the papers in the court according to which they have credible information about suspects' involvement in target killings, extortion and offences that comes within the ambit of Anti-Terrorism Act. The court directed the provincial authorities to form a joint investigation team within 15 days for interrogating the suspects. The Rangers will keep the suspects in their custody for the period of 90 days considering legal provision 11 EEEEE (1) of Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.

Concerned over reports of an increase in civilian casualties from the Johan area of Kalat District and the Isplingi area of Mastung District allegedly as a result of an operation by Security Forces, chairperson of the HRCP Zohra Yusuf said that the authorities needed to ensure excessive force was not being used, as it would further alienate the people of Balochistan. The recent increase in casualties from these two areas being reported at the Quetta's Civil Hospital has become a cause of concern for the HRCP whose representatives say it is difficult to identify those getting killed in the military operation due to its inaccessibility to rights activists.

Yusuf said that 27 bodies were brought to the Civil Hospital in Quetta over the past few days that she said was alarming. "Since the areas mentioned are inaccessible to journalists and activists, it is difficult to identify the dead. But, according to our activists who spoke to the people in the surrounding areas of Quetta, these are civilian casualties," she added.

April 13

At least 10 Policemen and five gangsters were killed while another 25 were taken hostage, leading to the suspension of the operation against the Chhotu Gang in Rajanpur District. It was learnt that two boats carrying 42 Policemen advanced on positions of the dacoits who fired at them. 15 gangsters and four Policemen were injured in the operation. The IGP-led Operation Zarb-e-Aahan (Strike of the dawn) that was launched on April 5, 0216, in the District against the gangsters was suspended till the formulation of a new strategy. Rajanpur DPO Ghulam Mubashir Mekan said around 200 criminals had rendered the 30-kilometre island-like area into a no-go area. They are armed with sophisticated weapons.

Two AQIS terrorists were shot dead in a Police shootout and another was arrested in Barfat Goth area of Gulshan-e-Maymar in Gadap Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. The slain terrorists were identified as Abdul Saboor alias Hamad alias Hassan alias Younus and Mohammad Mujtaba alias Rehan alias Aslam alias Kashif alias Abdul Rehman. Their arrested companion was identified as Mohammad Murtaza alias Abu Hurairah.

Raja Umer Khattab, the Chief of the CTD's Anti-Transnational Terrorist Intelligence Group, said that the Police also found an explosives factory and a huge cache of weapons and explosive material at the terrorists' hideout. While searching their hideout, the police came across an underground water tank where 80 kilogrammes of explosives, circuits, ball bearings, bottle bombs, ball bombs, and other material used for preparing bombs were found. Besides, they also found a laptop, memory cards, USBs, jihadist literature, target lists, two motorcycles equipped with improvised explosive devices, two Kalashnikovs, a 9mm pistol, bullets and grenades there.

A bullet-riddled dead body, identified as that of one Zahid (30), was found in within the Memon Goth Police limits in Bin Qasim Town. The victim was a watchman at a PSO petrol pump.

Another unidentified dead body was found in an empty plot situated in Allahwala Town within the Korangi Industrial Area police jurisdiction.

The CoAS General Raheel Sharif while chairing a security meeting at the Corps Headquarters in Karachi said that a terror-free and peaceful Karachi is the ultimate aim of the operation and all efforts must be directed with a focused approach to achieve this objective, reports Daily Times.

April 14

At least four more Policemen were killed in the ongoing Operation Zarb-e-Aahan in Rajanpur District. The dead bodies came with a threat to kill 24 captive Policemen if safe passage is not provided to leaders of Chotoo gang. The gangsters also handed over four injured Policemen to representatives of Police.

Federal Interior Ministry accorded approval for launching a military operation against the criminals of Rojhan tehsil in Rajanpur District. An unnamed Police official said that an army battalion from Okara and two platoons of the SSG, an independent commando regiment/corps of the army, has been called in to launch a large-scale operation. A strike force with paratroops from Rangers would also take part in the joint operation along with regular policemen and commandos of the force, the official added.

A murder convict, Imtiaz Ahmad, was hanged till death in Haripur Central Prison of Haripur District. Ahmad was convicted in a murder case of a man in 2005. According to jail sources, District and Sessions Judge Mansehra awarded the capital punishment to the convict which was subsequently upheld by the High and Supreme Court.

The Sindh Rangers interrogated senior leader of PPP Abdul Qadir Patel for his alleged involvement in serious crimes and links with criminal gangs operating in Lyari Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Sources said that the interrogation, which continued for over five hours at the Rangers' Karachi headquarters, took place with Lyari PAC chief Uzair Baloch sitting in the same room. After failing to give satisfactory answers to the investigating officer, Patel was transferred to an undisclosed location for further investigation, with sources saying that the PPP leader was expected to be remanded for 90 days in Rangers' custody.

The FO rejected the notion that the peace process between Pakistan and India was suspended, saying it remained engaged with Delhi. "We need to look ahead and not think in terms of foreclosing any options. Both sides are in contact with each other," FO spokesman Nafees Zakaria said. "Dialogue is the best option. Diplomacy is for interaction and engagement between countries," he added.

April 15

The Army officially launched a ground and aerial operation, codenamed Zarb-e-Aahan, in Rajanpur District, leading to the surrender of 40 gangsters. The gangsters said that they never wanted to fight against Pakistan Army. Curfew has been imposed in four kilometer area and soldiers have also been assisted with gunship helicopters. Addressing officers at the Central Police Office in Lahore, Punjab IG Mushtaq Sukhera said the Zarb-e-Aahan operation had been launched in collaboration with other law enforcement agencies. "During training sessions, 50,000 rounds were fired and use of mortars and other equipment were demonstrated," the IG said, adding that two retired colonels from the Special Services Group were on board in the operation.

An administrative judge of the ATC accepted a seven-day physical remand request of AQIS, terrorist, Syed Murtaza. Producing the accused before the ATC, an official of the CTD informed the court that he was involved in cases pertaining to possession of explosive materials, illicit weapons, attempted murder and firing at police officials. The court ordered for the accused to be produced in court following expiration of the remand period.

An activist of the MQM, Irfan Sheikh alias Irfan Sindhi, was handed over to the Rangers on a 90-day remand. He was said to be involved in cases of target killings of a number of people, demanding extortion and carrying out kidnappings-for-ransom. The court was also presented with a letter empowering the Rangers to keep anyone suspected of having committed heinous crimes for 90 days. The court endorsed the order and sent the accused on remand.

Defence Secretary Alam Khattak while briefing the Senate Committee on defence told the Parliament that Pakistan received at least USD 13 billion from the US since the September 11, 2001 (also known as 9/11) attacks for logistic and other support in the war against terrorism. Khattak said that his country got "USD 13 billion under the CSF since 9/11", while another USD 200 million is due to be reimbursed by the US.

According to a declassified US Government document obtained by National Security Archive, a non-governmental research institute at George Washington University, a Pakistani intelligence officer paid USD 200,000 to an extremist network to facilitate a suicide bomb attack on CIA operatives on Forward Operating Base Chapman in Khost District of Afghanistan on December 30, 2009. The heavily redacted document suggests that Pakistan's spy agency, the ISI Directorate, and the Haqqani Network were involved in facilitating the attack.

Later, the State Department spokesman John Kirby said, "We have been consistently clear with the highest levels of the Government of Pakistan that it must target all militant groups, including the Haqqani Network, al Qaeda, Lashkar-e-Taiba'. "The government of Pakistan itself has repeatedly said it's not going to discriminate against a terrorist group regardless of their agenda or affiliation," he said.

Pakistan's Foreign Office termed allegations of its involvement in the attack as preposterous, saying the country itself was the biggest victim of terrorism. Pakistan was shocked and saddened when American lives were lost at the Chapman facility in 2009 in an attack later claimed by TTP, a statement said.

April 16

The guard of a pro-government Lashkar leader, Bilal Afridi, was killed when a suicide bomber attacked the hujra of Said Jamal in the Kharko Sarhgi area in the Zakhakhel tehsil of Khyber Agency in FATA in the night.

The CTD of Police claimed to have arrested two fishermen over their alleged links to the Indian spy agency RAW. Acting on a tip-off, the Police detained Saddam Husain and Mohammed Bachal in the Shah Bander area in Thatta, said CTD Investigation officer Naveed Khowaja. He added that the suspects revealed that they had been persuaded by another Pakistani fisherman, Mohammed Khan, to work for RAW in return for permission to fish in Indian waters and money. The two suspects entered India through Shah Bander and met RAW operatives, Kiran and Arjun, at the Bhuj Police Station. They were provided a camera and tasked to take pictures of sensitive installations of Pakistan Navy and Coast Guards in Thatta and Karachi.

April 17

The Levies forces and political administration officials averted a major disaster by defusing improvised explosive devices and rockets that were rigged to blow Usmania Plaza, located in Kurmi Bazaar area of Parachinar in Kurram Agency of FATA.

FC and sensitive agencies in their joint action in Panjgur District arrested a militant 'commander'. Huge arms and ammunition were also recovered from his possession, which included seven LMGs, seven rocket launchers, seven RPG-7, three SMGs, three hand grenades and thousands of bullets. According to sources, arms and ammunition were brought through N-85 Highway to Hoshab.

Security agencies detained six Baloch sardars in Rajanpur District for allegedly backing the Chotu gang and other criminals. The detained sardars were believed to be the 'major facilitators' and listed in the 'Black Book' Punjab Police. Punjab Police Chief Mustaq Ahmed Sukhera said that over 100 facilitators of the Chotu gang had been arrested in Rahim Yar Khan District. He said that a list of Police officers who had allegedly facilitated the notorious criminals had also been prepared and they would face an exemplary punishment if found involved.

Chotu gang released a few of the two dozen hostage Policemen and demanded a safe passage in return for the release of the remaining hostages. However, the details about the Policemen released were not disclosed. According to unnamed official sources, the demand that also included the release of the family of the ringleader of the Chotu gang was rejected and the gangster was given a final warning to surrender along with his accomplices.

April 18

The Law enforcement agencies arrested Lyari gangster Riasat Baloch along with his two accomplices from Golimar area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Riasat Baloch was wanted to Police in more than 60 heinous crimes including murder of the Police personnel. Arms were recovered from the possession of the arrestee.

As many as 144 Baloch militants laid down their arms by accepting Government's amnesty scheme in Khuzdar District of Balochistan. Four commanders of different militant organizations were also among the militants to give up arms. "We will fulfill all the promises we have made to the militants who have surrendered," said Commissioner of Kalat District in Balochistan. The government has promised financial assistance to youths who laid down weapons and abandoned violence against the State.

Army helicopter gunships pounded the island hideout of Chotu gang that has been holding 24 hostages on a 10-km (six-mile) long island in the centre of the Indus River in Rajanpur District of Punjab. The operation involving more than 2,000 SFs has been ongoing for two weeks and the Army's push to deploy troops, artillery and helicopter gunships is an unprecedented use of force by the military in Punjab. "We (army) had given the Chotu gang until 2 pm today to surrender but they did not abide by the deadline," said a military official based in the district of Rajanpur where the battle is taking place. "Now there is no option left but a full-scale operation, which has started."

The Army declared operation in Shawal area of North Waziristan Agency in FATA successful and started clearing improvised explosive devices and other unexploded ordnance in the area. The ISPR said in a statement that Army Chief General Raheel Sharif visited the embattled area near the Afghan border and he was briefed by formation commanders about operational gains achieved so far. More than 800 kilometers area has been secured in Shawal and heavy casualties have been inflicted on terrorists since the start of the last phase of Operation Zarb-i-Azb in February, it said. A security official said the ongoing phase of the operation had been accomplished successfully and troops were holding all important locations near the border.

April 19

At least two people, including suicide bomber, was killed and 18 others were injured in a suicide attack in the Mardan Excise and Taxation Department located in Cantonment Area on Mall Road in Mardan District. Eyewitnesses saw the attacker walking into the building, the District Police Office (DPO) Faisal Shahzad said, adding that the attacker's suicide vest contained 8-10 kilograms of explosive material.

Members of the Chotu gang released hostage Policemen and surrendered to the Army in Rajanpur District, Police sources said. The Chotu gang, led by Ghulam Rasool, alias Chotu, was given a deadline by the Army to surrender on April 18, 2016, failing which, the Army said it would begin a full-scale operation in the area. A source in the Police Department said that Chotu had demanded safe passage for himself, his family and some loyal accomplices to proceed to Dubai in return of safe release of the captive Policemen.

Terrorists have been driven out of their last bastion in NWA of FATA, the military said, announcing the completion of the final phase of Zarb-e-Azb operation and launching of "combing operations" in areas other than FATA.

The CoAS General Raheel Sharif emphasised on consolidating the gains and resettling the TDPs in their areas to the best of our abilities, the ISPR said in a statement. He called for breaking the nexus between terrorists and their facilitators sitting outside the tribal areas. General Raheel ordered large-scale "combing operations" immediately to seek out terrorists, their sleeper cells and facilitators in areas other than the FATA, and to enhance the reach of the Law Enforcement Agencies. An unnamed senior security official said that large-scale force would be sent to the areas with the presence of terrorists and their facilitators. "This will be applicable to the whole of Pakistan," he added. "The areas not accessible to the Police would be brought under the control."

April 20

Seven Police officials guarding polio workers were killed in two separate attacks in Orangi Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. DIG West Feroz Shah said that eight gunmen riding four motorcycles carried out the killings in two separate attacks in the neighborhood. "The gunmen first opened fire on three Policemen in the streets of Orangi Town, killing them all," he said, adding: "Later they shot dead four Policemen, who were sitting in a police mobile van" a few streets away.

The Leader of the Chotu gang, Ghulam Rasool, along with 13 gang members has 'surrendered unconditionally to the army', the ISPR announced, bringing to non-violent end the 21-day long operation in the riverine area of Rajanpur District of Punjab. Addressing a press briefing regarding the ongoing operation in Rajanpur area, ISPR Director General Lieutenant General Asim Bajwa said, "The military has successfully completed operation Zarb-i-Ahan." He confirmed that the 24 policemen taken hostage by the Chotu gang had been rescued. "However, the army will not vacate the area until all the miscreant elements are neutralised," Bajwa maintained.

The alliance of the political parties in NWA urged the Government to expedite the return of the displaced tribes and ensure completion of the rehabilitation process before Ramazan. Chairman of the alliance, Malik Akbar Khan representing the represents the Qaumi Watan Party said that the Security Forces had been making tall claims about clearing North Waziristan. However, he said the Government was showing lethargy in the rehabilitation process. He demanded the Government to ensure provision of basic facilities to the affected tribal people before their return to native towns.

The educational institutions and hospitals should be reopened and staff and facilities made available there, he added. The tribesman asked the government to conduct proper survey of the damages caused during the prolonged military operation and substantial compensation should be given to the affected people.

April 21

Four TTP terrorists, including their 'commander' Munshi, were killed in a Police encounter at the Super Highway in Malir Town area of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. According to SSP Malir Rao Anwar, on the intelligence information about the presence of the terrorists in the area, Police carried out raid at a house where exchange of fire took place between the Police and terrorists, killing four terrorists. Police also seized weapons and explosives from their possession.

A 16-year-old wounded girl, identified as Marriyum, who sustained injuries during the March 27, 2016, blast in Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park of provincial capital Lahore succumbed to her injuries in Jinnah Hospital, raising the death toll to 78. According to hospital sources, several injured persons of the blast are still admitted in different hospitals of the city, of which some are in critical condition and it is feared that the death toll might increase further.

The CTD arrested a terrorist, identified as Alam, from Khwazakhela area of Swat District for kidnapping Policemen. He was involved in kidnapping of five Policemen in 1994 form Swat.

Speaking on adjournment motions regarding the "terrible incident of suicide blast in Gulshan-i-Iqbal Park, Lahore" on March 27, 2016, the Senators called for a full-fledged military operation on militants' hideouts in Punjab. Initiating the debate, PPP parliamentary leader, Saeed Ghani, recalled that before this incident, the Punjab Government had always opposed a military operation, claiming that there were no organised militant groups in the province. He said the incident had proved the existence of terrorist groups in Punjab. He called for a military operation in the province similar to those initiated in Karachi and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Another PPP Senator Taj Haider termed the war against terrorism a "battle between extremist and democratic forces." He alleged that the sympathisers of militants were present within the state. "Is it not true that insiders were involved in the attacks on the GHQ and Mehran Base?" he questioned, calling for the removal of such elements from the institutions.

April 22

The Special Assistant to KP Chief Minister on Minorities' Affairs MPA Sardar Soran Singh was shot dead in a targeted attack near Pir Baba in Buner District. The District Police Chief Khalid Hamadani said, "Gunmen riding on two motorbikes came in front of the car and started indiscriminate firing, killing minister on the spot".

Four more members of the Chotu gang surrendered to Army in Rajanpur District of Punjab, raising the number of surrendered gangsters to 17. The Army and Police have launched an operation against the gang to clear Kacha Jamal riverine area from the outlaws. Gang leader Ghulam Rasool Chotu and his 12 accomplices had surrendered to the Army two days ago and freed 24 Policemen the gang had taken hostage.

Meanwhile, Chotu and his 12 accomplices had been shifted to Islamabad for interrogation. Sources said intelligence agencies would interrogate Chotu and members of his gang In Islamabad. The Punjab Government has also set up a JIT headed by Atta Muhamamd Khan, Dera Ghazi Khan District Police Officer, to interrogate Chotu.

April 23

At least 12 militants were killed and two SF personnel injured in a clash along Pak-Afghan border when unidentified militants attacked a security check post in Baizai area of Mohmand Agency in FATA in the night. The check post came under attack once again April 24-morning, this time with heavy weapons, the officials said. "Both attacks were successfully repulsed. The militants faced heavy casualties," one security official added.

Unidentified armed men shot dead National Party leader Mir Ghulam Hussain Sarpara in the Gardigap area of Mastung District in Balochistan Province. According to Levies Force, Sarpara was fired at by the attackers riding on a motorcycle at his agriculture land in Gardigap area. The assailants managed to escape from the scene.

The SF personnel destroyed more than 30 bunkers and caves during a search operation in Tora Cheena area of Darra Adam Khel District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the night. According to officials, the SFs carried out the day-long operation after getting a tip that militants had turned the region, known as Tora Cheena, into a sanctuary from where they carried out attacks on SFs.

April 24

One FC official was killed and another one was injured an IED blast near a FC bomb-disposal unit which was patrolling the Soran area of Baizai in Mohmand Agency. The IED was possibly planted by the militants while they were retreating following the attack on the Baizai security check post.

The JuA, a splinter group of the TTP, claimed responsibility for the attacks on SFs in Baizai area of Mohmand Agency.

Afghanistan officials accused Pakistani forces of shelling a border post in Goshta District of Nangarhar Province and claimed an Afghan soldier was killed in the alleged attack.

The Afghanistan Government asked Pakistan to take practical steps to eradicate terrorism and persuade the Taliban to come to the peace talks, otherwise Kabul will not trust Islamabad. President's Deputy Spokesman Dawa Khan Mina Pal said that Islamabad's role was very essential in combating terror on its soil. "Pakistan's measures to eradicate terrorism are very important. We will not trust Pakistan until it fulfills its commitment," Pal said. The HPC says it sees slim chances of the Taliban joining the peace process and the Afghan government has no expectations that Pakistan will work for peace in the war-torn country.

The Sindh Government decided to extend special powers of Rangers for the next 90 days. The Rangers had asked for the extension of powers on April 21 through a letter to the Sindh Home Department as its policing powers will expire on May 3. The Home Department has sent a summary in this regard to the Chief Minister who is expected to grant the extension.

April 25

The CTD arrested three alleged target killers belonging to a political party and seized huge quantity of arms and ammunition from their custody in North Karachi Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. SSP-CTD Intelligence Wing, Amir Farooqi said that the Police detained Mudasir Ali, Shafqat Ali and Mohammed Faiz from North Karachi. The Police claimed to have seized one machine gun, two LMGs, three 7-MM rifles, one Kalashnikov and other arms and ammunition from their possession.

Levies personnel recovered three bullet-riddled dead bodies from Hoshab area of Kech District. An unnamed Levies official said that the victims were laborers and were killed in an act of target killing.

The CTD arrested three alleged target killers belonging to a political party and seized huge quantity of arms and ammunition from their custody in North Karachi Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. SSP-CTD Intelligence Wing, Amir Farooqi said that the Police detained Mudasir Ali, Shafqat Ali and Mohammed Faiz from North Karachi. The Police claimed to have seized one machine gun, two LMGs, three 7-MM rifles, one Kalashnikov and other arms and ammunition from their possession.

Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani warned that he would lodge a complaint with the UNSC if Pakistan refuses to take military action against Taliban 'commanders' operating from its soil to wage insurgency across Afghanistan. "I want to make it clear that we do not expect Pakistan to bring the Taliban to talks," Ghani said during the joint session of the two houses of the Parliament.

He said that in quadrilateral talks over the past year that involved the US and China, Pakistan had pledged "in writing" to go after Taliban leaders who refuse to join the peace process.

"We want the Pakistanis to fulfill their promises in the quadrilateral and take military action against those who have their centres in Pakistan and whose leaders are in Pakistan based on our security organisations, the intelligence of our international partners, and the words of Pakistan officials," Ghani said, adding, "If we do not see a change, despite our hopes and efforts for regional cooperation, we will be forced to turn to the UNSC and launch serious diplomatic efforts."

Malakand Police claimed that PTI MPA Soran Singh was killed on April 22, 2016, over political rivalry, and the claim made by TTP is false. DIG Malakand Azad Khan said that a fellow PTI leader Baldev Kumar was behind the murder of Soran Singh as he wanted to avenge political rivalry. "Baldev Kumar wanted to contest the election instead of Singh... after failing to get the party ticket, Kumar planned the murder," said DIG Khan. The officer said that Police had arrested six people in connection with the murder, including Baldev, and the assassins hired to kill the PTI lawmaker, and registered cases against them. DIG Khan further said that Anti-Terrorism clauses have been included in the cases as the murder invoked fear among the people of the area and minority community.

According to Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya (JA) annual report released, the year 2015 proved to be yet another taxing year for the Ahmadi community in Pakistan. Over the year, two Ahmadis were killed, the houses of scores of others were set ablaze and a concerted anti-Ahmadiyya campaign continued relentlessly, the report stated. The documents further states that at least 248 Ahmadis have been killed because of their beliefs, 323 have been the victims of attempted murder 27 Ahmadiyya worship places have been demolished 32 have been 16 illegally appropriated 39 graves of Ahmadis have been desecrated and the bodies of 65 have been refused burial in mixed cemeteries to date. JA spokesperson Saleemuddin said the community had been denied permission to hold religious assemblies in Chenabnagar. The JA, he said, was not even allowed to organise sporting events in the Ahmadi-majority town. On the other hand, he said, the community's persecutors were given a veritable free hand. He said they routinely staged mass rallies, spewed venom against Ahmadi stalwarts and incited people to kill members of the community. No action has been taken against such elements, Saleemuddin added.

April 26

Pakistan Rangers Sindh claimed to have arrested a target killer associated with the MQM during a search operation in Azizabad area of Gulberg Town in Karachi of Sindh. "Mohammad Kashif alias David, who belongs to the MQM, is a most wanted criminal in multiple targeted killing and terrorism incidents," Rangers official Colonel Faisal said. He said the operation was carried out close to MQM's Nine Zero headquarters. A cache of weapons and ammunition, including Kalashnikovs, LMGs and RPG-7, and Rangers uniforms were recovered from his possession.

An alleged facilitator, identified as Musa, of a 'commander' of the IS in Afghanistan, identified as Abdullah alias Cheeta, was arrested from Regi Lalma area in provincial capital Peshawar. DSP Saifullah said the suspect was wanted by the local Police for various crimes and was arrested during a search operation in Regi Lalma. Musa belonged to an inter-provincial criminal organisation, said the DSP.

Pakistan Rangers Sindh claimed to have arrested a target killer associated with the MQM during a search operation in Azizabad area of Gulberg Town in Karachi of Sindh. "Mohammad Kashif alias David, who belongs to the MQM, is a most wanted criminal in multiple targeted killing and terrorism incidents," Rangers official Colonel Faisal said. He said the operation was carried out close to MQM's Nine Zero headquarters. A cache of weapons and ammunition, including Kalashnikovs, LMGs and RPG-7, and Rangers uniforms were recovered from his possession.

Pakistan FS Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhary accused India of trying to defame Pakistan in international forum by persisting with the listing of JeM 'chief' Maulana Masood Azhar in the UN 1267 Sanctions Committee.

The Foreign Ministry spokesperson was quoted as saying that the Azhar block is "in line with Security Council resolutions and the 1267 committee's rules of procedure for China to place a technical hold on the listing ... the committee encourages communication between countries that ask for the listing and countries where individuals or entities covered in the listing come from or live in. We encourage all parties related to the listing of Masood Azhar to have direct communication and work out a solution through serious consultation."

Under the political reconciliation scheme launched in Balochistan, 1,025 militants, belonging to various outfits, have surrendered before the Provincial Government during the past year, said Secretary Home and Tribal Affairs, Akbar Hussain Durrani. Among the surrendered militants are a dozen key militant 'commanders', who have laid down their arms before provincial officials. "Those who surrendered under the reconciliation police were paid a sum of Rs0.5 million," he said.

"A total of 2622 IBOs were carried out during the last year, during which 12,234 criminals and miscreants were arrested," said Durrani, referring to the operations carried out after the implementation of the NAP. The Home Secretary added that 323 criminals and miscreants were killed in skirmishes with security forces, with 72 other injured in the gunfights.

April 27

The Lyari gangster Uzair Jan Baloch, leader of the PAC, confessed his involvement in at least 198 murders, according to an unnamed Rangers official. Investigators reveal that Baloch has made several startling disclosures before the joint interrogation team. "Uzair Baloch has so far confessed to the murder of 198 people, directly or indirectly," claimed a Rangers official, adding, "Baloch has also admitted his involvement in politico-ethnic targeted killings, anti-state activities, extortion, kidnapping for ransom, drug peddling and possessing arms and explosives."

Kashif alias David, a target killer associated with the MQM confessed of killing more than 30 people including PML-N leader Zaheer Akram Nadeem and a leader of Bihari Qaumi Movement. Sindh Rangers spokesman, in a statement issued in Karachi, said, "Kashif aka David has confessed to killing more than 30 people." The spokesman said that the accused was part of Ajmal Pahari group since 1995. Later, Kashif, on the directives of MQM Rabitta Committee and Tanzeemi committee, was running a team of assassins since 2005.

At least three people were killed in a landmine explosion in Hamzani village of Sui tehsil in Dera Bugti District of Balochistan. Levies sources said, the incident took place when three people who were traveling on tractor hit the roadside bomb. In the explosion, all the three died on the spot.

Two BRA militants were killed and another was wounded in an operation carried out by SFs after receiving information about their presence by the Intelligence Agency in Prome area of in Panjgur District. Arms and ammunition, including three Kalash­ni­kovs, five 7mm rifles, hundreds of live rounds and two pistols and wireless sets and motorcycles were seized from the camp which was destroyed by SFs.

An ASI of the Phandu Police Station, identified as Qaisar Ali Shah, was shot dead in a targeted attack in Yakatoot area of provincial capital Peshawar.

As many as 11 suicide bombers entered Pakistan from Afghanistan for terrorism some 22 days ago, and two of them blew themselves up in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa recently, Intelligence Agency and Police sources said. According to the sources, the bombers were affiliated with Sajna Group of the TTP. The information about them and their entry in the country was gathered by the IB and shared with the authorities concerned, sources added. "They may strike in the Punjab, especially in Rawalpindi, Islamabad and Lahore," the sources revealed.

The Lyari gangster Uzair Jan Baloch, leader of the PAC, confessed his involvement in at least 198 murders, according to an unnamed Rangers official. Investigators reveal that Baloch has made several startling disclosures before the joint interrogation team. "Uzair Baloch has so far confessed to the murder of 198 people, directly or indirectly," claimed a Rangers official, adding, "Baloch has also admitted his involvement in politico-ethnic targeted killings, anti-state activities, extortion, kidnapping for ransom, drug peddling and possessing arms and explosives."

Kashif alias David, a target killer associated with the MQM confessed of killing more than 30 people including PML-N leader Zaheer Akram Nadeem and a leader of Bihari Qaumi Movement. Sindh Rangers spokesman, in a statement issued in Karachi, said, "Kashif aka David has confessed to killing more than 30 people." The spokesman said that the accused was part of Ajmal Pahari group since 1995. Later, Kashif, on the directives of MQM Rabitta Committee and Tanzeemi committee, was running a team of assassins since 2005.

The Afghan Taliban confirmed that they have sent a high-level delegation to Islamabad for talks with Pakistani officials, saying they hope the visit will have "fruitful results" and will be "in the interest of both countries". An Afghan Taliban delegation had travelled from its political office in Qatar to hold discussions in the light of "close relations, long border and commercial transactions" between the two neighbouring countries. Diplomatic sources say the Taliban delegation is on an "exploratory discussions" mission as part of Islamabad's efforts to facilitate peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban. Taliban's political office in the Qatari capital of Doha is solely authorised to hold political talks. "The esteemed leader of the Islamic Emirate (the Taliban) has instructed the delegation to discuss issues relating to Afghan refugees and some problems relating to the Afghan border provinces of Helmand and Nangarhar," reads a statement.

April 28

A man, identified as Bahram Khan, and his son, Muhammad Siddique, were killed in a landmine blast in Lehri area of Sibi District.

The CTD arrested a suspected terrorist, identified as Mukhtiar, resident of Dogdara Bazaar in Lower Dir District, for his involvement in an attack on a mosque at Hayagai, in which 33 persons were killed and 10 others were injured.

The CTD also claimed to have arrested another suspected terrorist Noor Khel, resident of Peshawar, from Haripur District. The police claimed to have recovered one hand grenade, one pistol and its rounds from his possession.

National Adviser to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz while addressing the Fifth Conference on Interaction and CICA held in Beijing said that the core dispute of Jammu and Kashmir must be resolved in accordance with the resolutions of the UNSC and the wishes of the Kashmiri people for durable peace and stability in South Asia.

A report of Dawn said that the number of madrassas (Islamic seminary) in the country, as well as the number of students enrolled in them, has been on the rise. Even though seminary boards offer different reasons for the growing number of students and institutions in the country, the administrators of all five mainstream seminary boards believe that a lack of a clear policy was augmenting negative growth as well. "The Government is not doing anything, but it wants the five boards and the seminaries registered with us to be as perfect as a polished shoe," said Sahibzada Abdul Mustafa Hazarvi, Nazim-e-Ala (President) of the Tanzeem-ul-Madaris Ahl-e-Sunnat, the board for seminaries affiliated with the Barelvi school of thought.

"It was only due to misconduct that Wifaqul Madaris al-Arabia delisted Jamia Hafsa in Islamabad in 2007, in wake of anti-state political activities. But what have the authorities done? The seminary still continues to hold classes, is increasing its branches, enhancing the number of students and even criticises the board for not registering it - this is the writ of Government in Islamabad," Sahibzada Abdul Mustafa exclaimed. He said that there were around 9,000 madrassas affiliated with the Barelvi school of thought, imparting religious education to more than 1.3 million students. He said that there has been an increase of 10 per cent in the number of seminaries and students as compared to the previous year.

April 29

The CTD arrested two suspects, identified as Asim and Azhar, on suspicion of having links with the TTP, from Samanabad area of provincial capital Lahore. One of them was an office bearer of a religious party.

The CTD arrested a TTP suspect, identified as Soahil, during a search operation at Shaheenabad Road of Sargodha District. Police also recovered a suicide jacket, a pistol and maps of airbase from his possession.

Three terrorists, involved in killing of tourists at Nanga Parbat base camp in June 2013, were shifted to Islamabad from Gilgit District. Unnamed sources said that the alleged terrorists were brought to the federal capital through flight PK-606.

President Mamnoon Hussain while talking to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra said that the Zarb-e-Azb operation was progressing successfully and would continue till complete elimination of the last terrorist. The President said that the government was committed to bring FATA at par with other areas of the country by completing ongoing development projects and providing socio-economic amenities to improve the standard of life of the people.

May 1

Four Lyari-gangsters in a Police encounter in Dalmia area of Mujahid Colony in Liaquatabad Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Gulshan SP Dr. Fahad Ahmed confirmed the incident. Six grenades, one AK-47, one repeater and two pistols were recovered from their possession.

The JIT report has found that PAC leader Uzair Jan Baloch had worked for an Iranian intelligence agency, and it further recommended that he be tried by a military court for 'espionage'. The JIT report signed by representatives of the Sindh Police, Rangers and Intelligence Agencies was sent to the Home Department on April 29, 2016, for "perusal and necessary action". According to the JIT report, Uzair Baloch was involved in "espionage activities by providing secret information regarding army installations and officials to foreign agents (Iranian intelligence officers) which is a violation of the Official Secret Act 1923". The report quoted him as telling the members of the JIT that he fled to Iran after the Rangers launched an operation in Karachi in 2013.

At least 13 people were injured when unidentified assailants threw a hand grenade outside a private guest house in Tehkal Bala area of provincial capital Peshawar. SSP-Operations Abbas Majeed Marwat confirmed the incident. Marwat claimed the two suspected attackers were arrested.

The US Congress is considering a new aid cut to persuade Islamabad to release Dr Shakil Afridi, who is serving a 23-year prison term for allegedly helping the CIA run a fake hepatitis vaccine program in Abbottabad to confirm slain al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden's presence. According to Congressional sources, a group of Republican and Democratic lawmakers were working on a new measure to use aid cuts to get Dr Afridi out of prison.

The sources further revealed that this year the lawmakers want a more substantial cut to force Pakistan to release Dr Afridi. "I would not be surprised if Congress made a big portion of this [fiscal 2017] aid contingent on the release of Dr Afridi and his family," Congressman Brad Sherman said. Congressman Matt Salmon, who chairs the House Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific, also supported the suggestion. Pakistan needed to know that its treatment of Dr Afridi "is the single biggest impediment to members" wanting to support the country, he said.

May 2

A man, identified as Abdul Moeen (35), was shot dead by Lyari gangsters in an incident of firing on the Sheedi Village Road at Lea Market in Lyari Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh.

A Police constable, identified as Sher Muhammad, was shot dead by two unidentified armed assailants while he was on duty at Police Lines in Mardan District of KP.

15 people, including three children, were injured in a grenade attack on JuD madrassa, Baitul Mukarrama Al-hadees, in Tehkal area of provincial capital Peshawar. SP Cantonment Peshawar Kashif said that the assailants opened fire and lobbed grenades at the seminary.

CoAS General Raheel Sharif while chairing a meeting of Corps Commanders at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi approved a comprehensive plan to carry out combing operations aimed at pre-empting potential sleeper cells and hideouts of terrorists across the country. The development comes after the military had announced conclusion of the Shawal operation in Shawal Valley of North Waziristan Agency in FATA on April 18, 2016.

The US administration asked Pakistan to "put forward" its "national funds" to buy F-16 fighter jets, because some top American Senators have put a hold on the use of US tax payers' money to subsidize Pakistan's purchase. "While Congress has approved the sale, key members have made clear that they object to using FMF (foreign military financing) to support it. Given Congressional objections, we have told the Pakistanis that they should put forward national funds for that purpose," US State Department spokesman John Kirby said.

May 3

The MQM leader Dr Farooq Sattar's coordinator Aftab Ahmed (42), who was under Rangers' 90-day preventive detention, died in provincial capital Karachi. The party alleged extra-judicial killing and demanded for probe in the incident. The pictures and video clips of the dead body revealed wounds that suggest he was brutally tortured to death. Speaking at Ahmed's funeral, Sattar said Ahmed was picked by Rangers from his home in Federal B Area on May 1, 2016, while he was with his family even though there was no case registered against him at any Police Station. However, the paramilitary force maintained that Ahmed died due a heart attack.

Acting on a summary moved by the Sindh Home Department, Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah extended powers of paramilitary Rangers in Karachi for another 77 days. The government extended the Rangers' powers with the same mandate, which the force has been enjoying since 2013. The special powers have been extended till July 19, 2016. With these additional powers, Rangers are allowed to seal exit/entry points and conduct searches in all Districts of Karachi.

Four convicts were hanged till death on May 3 in the Kot Lakhpat jail of provincial capital Lahore. The four convicts were identified as Nadim Aslam, Mohammad Ishfaq, Mohammad Arif and Shahzad. They were convicted in the murder of five persons in separate incidents.

Five Police personnel were injured in an IED blast in Eastern Bypass area of Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan. No outfit claimed responsibility for the attack.

Police arrested an alleged militant, identified as Muhammad Shah, in Peuchar area of Matta tehsil in Swat District of KP. Sources said Muhammad Shah was involved in terrorism related cases in Swat.

JuD chief and founder of LeT Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, rejected allegations that his organisation is promoting extremism in Thar area of Badin District by opening seminaries in the poverty stricken region. He said that it was Muslims' responsibility to safeguard holy places of their Hindus brethern. "We will not allow destruction of temples and other holy places of non-Muslims in the country," he warned. He further said that his support for Kashmiri Muslims was unwavering. "We were and are with Kashmiris."

The Federal Government decided to give the status of town and municipal committee to all the tehsils and agency headquarters of the FATA in order to ensure provision of better civic facilities to the people there. The meeting was informed that 23 tehsils and Agency headquarters had been identified to be elevated to town level.

The return process of the displaced families continued on the fourth day as 300 more displaced families returned to their native villages in upper parts of Orakzai Agency. Talking to reporters, Assistant Political Agent Iqbal Wazir said that 300 more families were sent back to their homes in Ismailzai tehsil on fourth day of the return process, which started on April 30.

May 4

The CTD killed at least eight suspected militants in an exchange of gunfire at Sharaqpur Road in Sheikhupura city of Sheikhpura District in Punjab. On seeing the law enforcers, the terrorists opened fire on them. In retaliatory fire, eight terrorists were killed and four of their accomplices escaped. Huge quantity of weapons including four Kalashnikovs, as many pistols and six kilograms of explosives were recovered from their possession.

Two men and a woman belonging to a banned sectarian organisation and one personnel of a law enforcement agency were killed in a clash in Pind Ghakhara village in Rawalpindi District.

The LEAs killed three TTP militants during a search operation in Tofkian tehsil of Haripur District in KP. A Policeman was also killed and another injured during the operation.

The LEAs and sensitive agencies personnel arrested 15 outlaws including three terrorists of a banned outfit besides recovering weapons including hand grenades from their possession during separate actions Lines Area and Surjani Town of Karachi.

The Sindh CM Qaim Ali Shah extended the period of stay of the paramilitary Rangers force in the city for another 77 days. The period of stay was extended under Article 147 with the signature of the CM. The Rangers' period of stay was extended as it was set to expire at midnight on May 3.

CoAS General Raheel Sharif confirmed the death sentences of 11 convicts tried by military courts. The 11 hardcore terrorists were involved in committing heinous offences related to terrorism which include killing and kidnapping civilians' attacks on the armed forces and LEAs and destruction of schools and communication infrastructure, ISPR said.

May 5

A Revenue Assistant Officer, identified as Anwar Zeb, was shot dead by unidentified armed assailants while he was travelling home on Dalazak Road in provincial capital Peshawar.

MQM worker Aftab Ahmed Hussain (4), who died in the custody of the paramilitary Rangers on May 3, 2016, was subject to torture 'before his death' with around '35 to 40 per cent' of his body bearing bruises, his post-mortem report stated.

HRCP, in its annual report for 2015, launched in Karachi Press Club on May 5 observed that despite a marked decrease in overall violence in the metropolis, "a few steps taken to restore law and order have instead left a broad trail of human rights violations". Expressing concerns over rising cases of extrajudicial killings in the province and the metropolis, HRCP Sindh Vice Chairperson Asad Iqbal Butt observed that the accused must be presented before the courts of law if there were any charges against them, as 'murdering' them extrajudicially would only pave way for anarchy.

May 6

Two Shia school teachers, identified as Mukhtiar Hussain and Akhtar Hussain, were shot dead by unidentified militants in a targeted killing incident in Miryali area of DI Khan District of KP.

Two Shia lawyers, identified as Atif Zaidi and Ali Muntazir, were shot dead in a targeted attack on Gird Road in DI Khan District. Police said all the four were victims of target killings and belonged to Shia community.

The KP Police suggested that former KP IGP Fayyaz Toru should be made a member of the Cabinet Committee constituted by the Chief Minister to review the proposed draft of Police Act, 2016.

May 7

Unidentified militants killed two people, including Shia religious scholar and rights activist Syed Khurram Zaki and his Shia journalist friend Rao Khalid, in a sectarian attack in North Karachi Town of Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. A passer-by, identified as Aslam, sustained injuries in the attack. Both the victims belonged to the Shia community. TTP-Hakeemullah faction, claimed responsibility for the attack, saying Zaki had been targeted for his stance against radical cleric of Lal Masjid Maulana Abdul Aziz.

Frontier Corps recovered a huge cache of arms and ammunition from the hideouts of BLA militants during a raid in Kodan area of Kohlu District in Balochistan.

May 8

A gangster affiliated with Baba Ladla group, identified as Naqeeb alias Mama, was killed in Police operation in Kalri area of Lyari Town of Karachi in Sindh.

In another Police operation, a gangster affiliated with Uzair Baloch gang, identified as Mustafa, was killed in Napier locality of Lyari Town. SSP City Fida Hussain said that the accused were involved murder, hand grenade attacks and extortion.

At least 12 persons, including two alleged gangsters, were injured in a grenade explosion near the residence of arrested leader of the PAC Uzair Jan Baloch, in Chakiwara area of Lyari Town. City SSP Fida Hussain said that one suspected gangster, identified as Kamran, was carrying a hand grenade in Singulane-5 when it fell from his hand on the road and exploded. He added that Kamran and his accomplice Zohaib Hasan belonged to PAC.

Police arrested six accused, including Lyari gangster Anees and Yasir alias Mama, from various areas of the city.

A 'commander' of the BLA, identified as Ahmed Nawaz, surrendered before the Frontier Constabulary, the civil administration and the local elders in Kharan District of Balochistan. According to FC spokesman Nawaz laid down his arms before the security agencies, wrapped himself in the national flag and sung national anthem.

Four levies personnel, who were kidnapped by militants from Gaishkoor area of provincial capital Quetta on an unspecified date, were recovered from the outskirts of Awaran District. The levies officials were identified as Sher Muhammad, Abdul Malik, Saeed and Allah Bakhsh.

May 9

Four persons were killed in a firing incident in Shrengal area of Lower Dir District (KP).

Five personnel of Balochistan Constabulary were injured in a bomb blast, which targeted their mobile van at Eastern bypass area in Quetta (Balochistan).

May 10

Two Policemen were killed and five persons, including three Policemen, were injured in an explosion outside the gate of Balochistan University in Quetta (Balochistan).

An IED attached to a bicycle exploded near a government employees’ residential colony in Jamshoro District (Sindh). However, no casualties were reported.   

Three wagons of a goods train overturned and six others derailed when two bombs exploded on a track near Goth Mureed Sipio Railway Crossing in Tandojam area of Hyderabad District. However, no casualties were reported. Hyderabad DIG Khadim Hussain Rind said that a pamphlet written in Sindhi was found at the place, but declined to share its contents.  

Sindh Rangers detained three more suspects, who were involved in killing dozens of people after informing ATC about their preventive detention for questioning. The suspects were identified as Jan Muhammad, Muhammad Asif and Faraz Qureshi. 

Five officials of the paramilitary Rangers force were arrested in connection with the death of Aftab Ahmed – the coordinator of MQM leader Dr Farooq Sattar – under the custody of Sindh Rangers on May 3, 2016.

Ali Haider Gilani, the son of former Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, who was kidnapped on May 9, 2013, from Multan District, was recovered from Taliban captivity in a joint operation carried out by US and Afghan forces in Ghazni Province of Afghanistan.

US Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan Commander General John Nicholson during a meeting with CoAS General Raheel Sharif at General Headquarters in Rawalpindi on acknowledged ‘the far reaching effects’ of operation Zarb-e-Azb in bringing peace and stability in the region.

May 11

A dead body of an unidentified man was found in the Gulbahar area of Liaquatabad Town of Karachi (Sindh). Gulbahar SHO Ghulam Asghar Abbasi said that from his appearance the victim looked Baloch. 

Four members of the Tablighi Jama’at (TJ) were shot at and wounded in a sectarian attack while they were preaching in Block-17 of F. B Area in Gulberg Town.  

Police and LEAs arrested three alleged terrorists and seized arms from their custody during a joint action Manghopir area of Gadap Town. The accused were involved in attacks on the security forces. 

PAC leader Uzair Jan Balcoh was sent to prison on judicial remand over charges of possessing illegal arms. 

CTD Malakand Division claimed to have arrested a terrorist, identified as Ibrahim, during a search operation in Buner Usmanabad area of Mingora city in Swat District (KP).

May 12

In a targeted killing incident unidentified assailants shot dead a SI of the Traffic Police in Peshawar (KP). A Police official said that two unidentified motorcyclists opened fire on SI, Aftab Khan of the Traffic Police, when he was going for duty on a motorcycle.

CTD claimed to have foiled an attempt by Afghanistan-based militants to carry out a terror act in Shangla and Swat Districts in KP. On a tip off, the CTD raided a hideout in Shangla where several militants had holed up and plotting a major terror attack in coming days. The CTD also recovered 10 kilograms of explosives material from them.

COAS General Raheel Sharif confirmed death sentences awarded to the five hardcore terrorists involved in the May 13, 2015, Safoora Chowrangi bus attack. According to ISPR, the convicts, active members of al Qaeda, were also involved in IED blast near Saleh Masjid, Karachi, and in the killing of a social worker, Sabeen Mahmud.

Several activists of the MQM and Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) were injured in political clashes between the two parties in Hyderabad District (Sindh). Police opened fire into the air to scare away the embattled activists and create a buffer zone between the two sides.

A total of 20,000 Policemen, including 8,000 for Karachi, will be added to the Sindh Police force to sustain peace, Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah approved during the apex committee meeting in Karachi. Karachi Corps Commander Lieutenant General Naveed Mukhtar assured Shah that he will make the necessary arrangements to train the new recruits by the Pakistan Army.

US State Department official, Elizabeth Trudeau, during a news briefing in Washington said that the US administration wanted Pakistan to act against the Haqqani Network and some important members of the US Congress are not prepared to support military aid to Pakistan without these specific actions. “Key members of Congress have been clear they’re not prepared to support US military aid to Pakistan absent some specific actions,” she said.

National Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz told the Senate that there was deadlock in Pakistan-US relations at the moment due to different reasons but the deal of sale of F-16 fighter jets to Pakistan had not been scrapped yet. “We have told US that Pakistan would not compromise on its nuclear program, have not made any commitment to release Dr Shakeel Afridi and third of its demand about action against Haqqani Network had not been met as it had not provided any concrete evidence against the militant group,” he said while mentioning some of the demands of US.

May 13

The Afghan Police claimed to have killed three TTP militants in Narai District of Kunar Province in Afghanistan. TTP militants attacked a base of Afghan SFs in Jangal Bosha area of Narai District on the night of May 12, 2016, Abdul Habib Saidkhel, Police Chief of Kunar Province said. The Police Chief further said that those killed by the SFs belonged to TTP and hailed from the Swat District in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

At least four persons, belonging to MQM and MQM-H, sustained injuries during armed clashes between the two groups in Landhi Town of Karachi (Sindh). The clashes began when militant outfit MQM-H attacked the office of the political party MQM in early hours of the morning. Following the incident, MQM activists and members staged a protest against the MQM-H cadres.

State Department Spokesman John Kirby said that US has an important and vital relationship with Pakistan as both the countries have shared threats, concerns and interests in the region. Kirby said ties between the two countries are complicated at times but it is an important relationship that “we continue to work at very, very seriously, and we are going to remain committed to”.


A member of peace committee, identified as Barkat Ali, was killed at Gomal area of Tank District of KP.

ATC administrative judge allowed Police to investigate incarcerated PAC gangster Uzair Jan Baloch in three more cases pertaining to murder and attacking law enforcer, reports. Baloch is currently in jail on judicial remand in an illicit weapons case. In the three new cases he has been accused of murdering two people and attacking police personnel to evade arrest. The judge directed police to furnish a progress report after completing the suspect’s interrogation.

May 15

Eight abducted workers, including three from FDA were released on in Dera Ismail Khan District of KP. They were abducted on March 10, 2016 from Toi Khula tehsil in Wana town of South Waziristan Agency in FATA. 

A man, identified as Abdul Ramazan (25), was shot dead by two unidentified armed assailants in a targeted attack in Surjani Town of Gadap Town in Karachi (Sindh).

Sindh Rangers raided sector offices of the MQM in Hyderabad District and arrested three senior party members, including former provincial minister Syed Sohail Mashhadi. The others were identified as Rafique Ajmeri and Raheel Fahim.

In another raid, Police and Rangers in a joint operation detained three alleged terrorists from DHA area within Darakhshan Police limits. The suspects were identified as Muslim Khan, Nadir Ali and Shaukat Ali, and the Police claimed to have recovered three Awan bombs and a rifle from their possession. 

LEAs arrested a suspect, associated with the Uzair Baloch group, from the Bara Board area in Pak Colony Police limits of SITE Town.

Two SHOs were suspended from their posts in an effort to bring all police officials involved in unlawful activities after Uzair Baloch revealed alleged links with them during his interrogation. SHO Shah Faisal Colony Babar Hameed and SHO Brigade Haji Sanaullah were dismissed from their posts after Baloch’s disclosure.

Three Government officials and a contractor were kidnapped from Dasht area of Kech (Turbat) District in Balochistan. According to sources, Fida Ahmed, a Sub-Divisional Offi­cer in the Road and Building Department, and Mohammad Ibrahim and Rahim Jan, sub-engineers of the Irrigation Department, accompanied by contractor Mehboob Dashti, were returning to Turbat after inspecting development projects in a nearby area. When they reached Dasht, unidentified militants intercepted them and took them away.

FC Balochistan seized huge cache of explosives and weapons from the hideout of militants in Shayban area of Dalbandin in Chagai District. Frontier Corps Balochistan spokesman said that the militants had planned to use the explosives against security forces adding that there sabotage plot was timely foiled.

Source:Compiled from news reports and are provisional.





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