SOUTH ASIA INTELLIGENCE REVIEW
Weekly Fatalities: Major Conflicts in South Asia
April 5-11, 2010
75 CRPF personnel and a Policeman killed in Maoist attack in Chhattisgarh: 75 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel and a State Policeman were killed in an attack by the Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) in Dantewada District early on April 6. The incident took place near Chintalnad -Tarmetla village in the District when a CRPF patrol party was returning from a road opening duty in the Naxalite-infested Mukrana forest between 6 to 7 am. The team had been camping in interiors of Tarmetla forest for the last three days as part of a combing operation.
Meanwhile, the Dandakaranya special zonal committee of the CPI-Maoist admitted that they lost eight of their cadres in the Dantewada attack. The statement, signed by three office-bearers of the committee, claimed that the Maoists made away with 21 AK-47s, seven SLRs, six LMGs, one stengun and other arms after the operation. The attack was to mark the centenary of the Bhumkal Adivasi rebellion and was to send a message to Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram to stop ‘Operation Green Hunt’. The Bhumkal uprising was the largest Adivasi rebellion that took place in Bastar in 1910. Times of India; PTI News; <Indian Express, April 6-10, 2010.
Manipur is hotbed of insurgency in Northeast followed by Assam, indicates MHA report: Manipur continues to be the hotbed of insurgency followed by Assam as 150 violent incidents have been reported in the two States in last three months, claiming 100 lives. According to Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), those killed included 77 militants, 20 civilians and three Security Force (SF) personnel. The MHA report stated that Nagaland has become relatively peaceful. Though there were 12 incidents of violence in the first three months of 2010 in Nagaland, there was no report of any casualty. In Meghalaya, four persons were killed in 2010 in five different incidents while one person was killed in Arunachal Pradesh. Though, there were nine incidents in Tripura in 2010, no report of any casualty has come from the State. Mizoram had no major insurgency and was comparatively a peaceful State. Altogether, 105 persons were killed in six North-eastern States — Assam, Manipur, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Tripura and Arunachal Pradesh —in 174 incidents till March. Overall, there were 1297 incidents of violence that claimed 877 lives, including 571 militants and 264 civilians, in 2009 in the entire Northeast. There were 1,561 incidents in the region in 2008 in which 1,152 people, including 466 civilians, lost their lives.
Meanwhile, the Union Government on April 8 said it will not enter into any kind of dialogue with splinter militant groups operating in the Northeast nor accept their laying down of arms in a public function. Security Forces shall take concerted action against such splinter groups, a Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) spokesman said. The Shillong Times; The Sangai Express, April 7-9, 2010.
Over 20 militant camps still exist in Bangladesh, says Tripura Chief Minister: Addressing a public rally on April 4, Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar said more than 20 militant camps still exist in Bangladesh. Sarkar said, "Around four years back we noticed a change in the situation; they (militants) have become and have been cornered, but not uprooted. Still today around 20 to 25 camps of Tripura militants exist in Bangladesh and they are trying to increase their strength eyeing the Autonomous District Council poll." Sentinel Assam, April 7, 2010.
Lashkar-e-Toiba eyes India's core sector, warns US think tank: A US Defence Department think tank warned that India’s transportation, economic infrastructure and political establishment are on the Lashkar-e-Toiba’s (LeT) radar. It has also confirmed India’s charge that the militant outfit still enjoys funding from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI). The think tank found the close links between LeT and Karachi-based D-Company of underworld gangster Dawood Ibrahim. The think tank associated with the US Army War College said that the LeT, though having a close relationship with al Qaeda, will continue to evolve into a distinctive South Asia-centric terrorist actor while still receiving aid from fringe elements in Pakistan’s security and intelligence apparatus and elsewhere. "This will not only allow LeT to continue to plan future Mumbai-style terrorist attacks in India from safe havens in Pakistan, but will also enable it to guide and assist the predominantly indigenous Indian Mujahideen (IM)," it added.
According to the think tank, LeT collects donations from the overseas Pakistani community in the Persian Gulf and the UK, Islamic non-Governmental organisations, Pakistani/Kashmiri business people and through its parent organisation Jama'at-ud-Da'awa (JuD). The militant outfit also counts on donations from sympathetic Saudis, Kuwaitis, and Islamist-leaning ISI leaders. "In addition, LeT maintains relations with extremist and/ or terrorist groups across the globe ranging from the Philippines to the Middle East and Chechnya by means of the JuD network," the report said. Economic Times, April 7, 2010.
Filipino insurgents in league with Maoists: The Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) is getting ready to raise their urban guerrilla force and for that they are getting help from their Filipino comrades, according to Indian intelligence agencies. The CPI-Maoist is turning into a global threat because it is playing a crucial role in unifying communist rebels across the globe, intelligence sources say. Indian intelligence agencies claimed that the link between the Maoists and their Filipino comrades came to light during the interrogation of two Maoist rebels arrested from Gujarat in March this year. On March 31, the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency of Philippines, too, corroborated this lead. Some members of the Communist Party of Philippines (CPP), one of the major communist insurgent outfits of the world, had met Indian Maoist leaders in Chhattisgarh, reports indicate. Times of India, April 11, 2010.
Maoists trying to forge links with militant outfits in Northeast, says Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram: Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram on April 8 said that Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) may be trying to forge links with militant outfits in the Northeast to gain access to the arms market in neighbouring countries. According to reports, Maoists have already established contacts with United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) in Assam and People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in Manipur. In 2008, the Maoist leader had signed an agreement with PLA leaders for strategic and logistic support. The PLA had later formally announced to take on the Government together with the Maoists as a common enemy. PLA had stated, "Maoists are fighting for the poor people and we are fostering a fast relationship with them."Assam Tribune, April 9, 2010.
All options against Maoists open, says Prime Minister Manmohan Singh: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on April 7 said the Government reviewed all options in the fight against the Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) such as use of air power from time to time but no decision has yet been taken on it. He said: "All these options are kept open and continuously reviewed. As of now, we have not taken any view in this direction.''
Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram also said while the Government had refrained from using air power against Maoists, the situation could change. "At present there is no mandate to use the air force or any aircraft. But, if necessary, we will have to revisit the mandate to make some changes," he added. He insisted that there was no "Operation Green Hunt" against Maoists as has been widely reported. Chhattisgarh Police officials say they had coined the term for one successful drive against the Maoists in the State.
the Union Government will deploy spy drones or unmanned
aerial vehicles (UAVs) for reconnaissance of Naxal (Left
Wing Extremist) hideouts at the tri-junction of Chhattisgarh,
Orissa and Andhra Pradesh over the next few days, indicate
reports. These Israeli drones, controlled through ground
stations several miles away, will give the security forces
real-time intelligence and imagery to track the movement
of ultras even through thick jungles. "They will make
the battle zone transparent for us," said an unnamed official.
of India, April 8-9, 2010.
136 militants and 11 civilians among 151 persons killed during the week in FATA: The Security Forces (SFs) backed by helicopter gunships killed 19 Taliban militants in the Lower Orakzai Agency of Federally Administrated Tribal Areas (FATA) on April 11. 10 militants were killed in a clash in Shireen Dara area of Lower Orakzai while nine were killed in another clash between the Taliban and troops in Saam and Kangra areas of the Agency.
At least 45 Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) militants were killed in air strikes in the Tirah Valley of Khyber Agency in FATA on April 10. Three SFs personnel and 10 militants were killed in clashes in Sararogha District of South Waziristan Agency.
The SFs killed 30 Taliban militants in clashes during the Operation Khwakh Ba De Sham (I will see you) in the Lower Orakzai and Kurram Agencies on April 9.
At least 10 abducted persons and two LI militants were killed as the fighter aircraft bombed a private prison of the LI outfit in the Tirah Valley of Khyber Agency on April 8.
At least 14 Taliban militants were killed when SFs backed by fighter jets bombed various areas of Orakzai Agency during the Operation Khwakh Ba De Sham on April 6. Six militant hideouts were also destroyed in the air strikes.
The SFs killed 15 Taliban militants and destroyed four of their hideouts during the Operation Khwakh Ba De Sham in various areas of the Orakzai Agency on April 5. Dawn; Daily Times; The News, April 6-12, 2010.
65 civilians and 35 militants among 101 persons killed during the week in NWFP: The Security Forces (SFs) killed at least 24 Taliban militants and arrested 21 others during fresh clashes in the Swat and Lower Dir Districts of North West Frontier Province (NWFP) on April 8.
At least three persons, including a pro-Government lashkar (tribal militia) leader, were killed in a shootout in the Shahi Khel area of Hangu on April 7. The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Orakzai chapter claimed responsibility for Sakhi’s killing. Three militants were killed in separate clashes with SFs in Matta tehsil (revenue unit) of Swat District.
At least 45 persons were killed and over 100 others sustained injuries when a suicide bomber blew himself up at a public meeting of the Awami National Party (ANP) at the Timergara Rest House in Lower Dir District on April 5.
A series of three powerful blasts followed by heavy gunfight in a brazen suicide mission, apparently planned to target the US Consulate in Peshawar, left eight persons dead and 18 others injured in Peshawar in the afternoon of April 5. Meanwhile, the TTP claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was in reaction to the US drone attacks. Dawn; Daily Times; The News, April 6-12, 2010.
Ruling UPFA secures almost two-thirds majority in Parliament: The ruling United Peoples' Freedom Alliance (UPFA) won a huge majority close to almost two-thirds in the 14th Parliament of Sri Lanka at the General election held on April 8. The UPFA secured majorities over 100, 000 in six electoral Districts while its majority in the electoral District of Kurunegala exceeded 200,000. The highest majority of 322,953 votes were recorded in the Gampaha District. The results for Kandy and Trincomalee Districts have not been released. They will be released only after a re-poll is held by the Elections Commissioner in electorates where counting has been suspended on account of alleged malpractices. Of the results of 180 seats declared so far, the UPFA has won in 120 constituencies.
The main Opposition grouping, led by the United National Party (UNP), has so far won only 47 seats. The Democratic National Alliance (DNA), the third front led by the defeated common consensus Presidential candidate and the former Army Chief General (retired) Sarath Fonseka, has fared poorly, securing less than half-a-dozen seats. The pro-LTTE Tamil National Alliance (TNA) bagged a dozen of the 20 seats for which the results have been declared so far in the provinces of north and east.
Meanwhile, the official final tally of the new Parliament is expected to be delayed for at least two weeks, as the Election Commission has withheld the results of 12 seats in the Kandy District following complaints of irregularities in some polling booths. The Election Commission is to release the voting data only after all the results are officially announced and the independent election monitors have estimated the voter turnout to be between 50 and 55 per cent. Polling in the war-ravaged Northern Province appears to be very low. Daily News; The Hindu, April 10, 2010.