SOUTH ASIA INTELLIGENCE REVIEW
Weekly Fatalities: Major Conflicts in South Asia
February 20-26, 2012
JeI threatens Government over Ghulam Azam's War Crime trial: On February 21, Jama'at-e-Islami (JeI) leaders threatened that no one in the country will remain safe should some harm befall their ex-party leader Ghulam Azam now held in jail on War Crime trial. "…No one on the soil of Bengal will be safe if any harm happens to him," Selim Uddin, an assistant secretary of JeI (Dhaka) city unit said in what appears to be an open threat to the Government. Daily Star, February 22, 2012.
Jammu court charges JKLF chief Yasin Malik under POTA: A local court in Jammu on February 24 charged Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief Yasin Malik under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) for allegedly raising funds to strengthen militancy in the State. Sessions judge (Jammu) Sanjay Parihar charged Malik with raising funds to strengthen "armed activity" in the State and "to strike terror among people". Malik pleaded not guilty to the charges. Times of India, February 25, 2012.
IM using SIMI network: Interrogation of arrested Indian Mujahideen (IM) militant Mohammed Qafeel Ahmed on February 23 has confirmed that the vast network of banned outfit Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) is now being used by IM. Qafeel disclosed that IM has no dearth of funds as the terror outfit continues to get substantial amounts of money through the hawala route from Pakistan. Asian Age, February 24, 2012.
Government has taken strong steps to intensify anti-Naxal operations, says Odisha Governor: In his address on February 21 to the Assembly, Governor Murlidhar Chandrakant Bhandare said the Government had taken strong steps to intensify anti-Naxal operations, with addition of 1,066 posts in the Special Operations Group (SOG). In another initiative, 70 Police Stations with an investment of INR 1.4 billion, INR 200 million per Police Station, are under construction in the Naxal-affected areas. The Governor said 1,384 constables, 3,127 Policemen and 99 group-D personnel were recruited to strengthen the Police force. IBN Live, February 23, 2012.
Union Government evolving uniform surrender policy for Naxal-hit States: In a bid to motivate Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) cadres to join the mainstream, the Union Government is likely to come up with a new uniform surrender policy for all Left Wing Extremism-affected States. It will be offering INR 500,000 to anyone laying down a Light Machine Gun (LMG) and INR 300,000 to those depositing an AK-47 assault rifle. The Hindu, February 23, 2012.
Hindu terror group Azad Sangthan admits role in Haryana blasts:Five people arrested by Patiala Police in connection with a series of blasts in Haryana associated with a Jind-based Hindu terror group, Azad Sangthan confessed their role in the blasts occurred between October 2009 and August 2010 at Jind, Safidon and Nuh. Azad Sangathan, a network of gaushalas or cow shelters for cow protection played an important role in indoctrinating and inspiring the alleged bombers. Times of India, February 22, 2012.
ANVC reiterates GAC demand in Meghalaya: Achik National Volunteers Council (ANVC) threatened to revive its old demand for greater Garoland, a separate State for Garos including the Garo-inhabited areas of Assam and West Khasi Hills, if the Government failed to respond to its demand for the Garoland Autonomous Council (GAC) within a week. ANVC spokesperson Torik Marak blamed the State Government for delaying the formation of the GAC though the Union Government was keen on forming the body. Telegraph, February 21, 2012.
Major three political parties decide to evacuate PLA cantonments within three weeks: Top leaders of the major three political parties - Nepali Congress (NC), Unified Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (UCPN-M) and Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist Leninist (CPN-UML) - on February 26 decided to empty all seven cantonments and satellite camps where Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) combatants awaiting integration into the Nepal Army are being kept. The leaders decided to evacuate all the cantonments within the next three weeks after agreeing on the proposal put forth by Maoist chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal aka Prachanda for the same. Nepal News, February 26, 2012.
Government and JTMMP sign six point agreement: Government and Terai-based armed outfit Janatantrik Terai Mukti Morcha Party (JTMMP) signed six point agreement during the first round talks held in Lumbini on February 25. The underground armed outfit had announced 'cease fire' on January 30 after the Government invited it for the talks. Nepal News, February 26, 2012.
44 militants and nine SFs among 61 persons killed during the week in FATA: 10 militants and two security personnel were killed in a clash between Security Forces (SFs) and militants in the Siplatoi area of South Waziristan Agency in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) during a search operation on February 26.
Six Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) militants were killed when helicopter gunships targeted their hideouts in Nanagrosa and Nari Baba areas in Landikotal town of Khyber Agency.
Seven militants and three soldiers were killed when militants attacked troops deployed in Malikdeenkhel area of Khyber Agency on February 24.
At least 17 Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militants were killed in an air strike in Khadizai, Samarbazar and Bermela areas of Upper Orakzai Agency on February 23. Dawn; Daily Times; The News; Tribune, February 20-26, 2012.
A total of 231 bullet-riddled bodies found in Balochistan in 2011, says CRSS report: A total of 231 bullet-riddled bodies were found by roadsides in Balochistan in 2011, said a report, titled Balochistan's Maze of Violence, compiled by the Centre for Research and Security Studies (CRSS), launched in Islamabad on February 19.
Baloch nationalist leader Senator Mir Hasil Khan Bizenjo on February 20 said that Balochistan was being run by Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) for all practical purposes for the last 15 years with no civilian control over governance in the volatile province. In addition, while condemning Islamabad for accusing India for creating unrest in Balochistan, Jamhoori Watan Party (JWP) Provincial President Shahzain Bugti on February 23 said it was Pakistan's intelligence agencies that were responsible for killings and abductions in the province.
Meanwhile, Interior Minister Rehman Malik on February 23 announced withdrawal of cases against the Baloch leaders currently residing abroad. However, the Baloch nationalist leaders on February 24 rejected Rehman Malik's announcement about withdrawal of cases against Brahamdagh Bugti and Harbayar Marri and said the Balochistan issue cannot be resolved without recovery of missing persons and bringing to justice the elements involved in dumping bullet-riddled bodies. Later, on February 26 all the cases filed against Baloch leaders were quashed. Cases lodged against Brahamdagh Bugti, Harbyar Marri, and Akhtar Mengal stand null & void. Dawn; Daily Times; The News; Tribune, February 21-26, 2012.
TTP embarks on high-profile abductions to raise millions of dollars, reveals report: Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and its aligned terror outfits have embarked upon a campaign of high-profile abductions which has armed the militant with millions of dollars in ransom being used to galvanise a sophisticated network of jihadi gangs whose reach spans the country, a report of Pakistan's security officials claimed on February 20. Wealthy industrialists, academics, Western aid workers and kin of military officers have been targets in a spree that began three years ago, a report quoting Pakistani security officials saying it has now spread to every major Pakistani city, reaching the wealthiest neighbourhood. Indian Express, February 21, 2012.
Safe havens in Islamabad could jeopardise US strategy in Afghanistan, says The Washington Post Report: Suspected militant havens in Pakistan could jeopardise the United States (US) strategy in Afghanistan, secret cables exchanged between the US Ambassador in Kabul and his superiors in Washington revealed, The Washington Post reported on February 24. According to the report, Ryan C. Crocker, the head of the US diplomatic mission in Afghanistan had sent a secret cable warning that the safe havens that insurgent fighters allegedly enjoyed in Pakistan, were failing years of US efforts to place curbs on the likes of the Haqqani Network, and ultimately plans to hand over security responsibilities to an Afghan force. Tribune, February 25, 2012.
Islamabad vows to support, not lead the peace efforts in Kabul, says Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar: Pakistan will give its full support to any clear effort by the Afghan Government to achieve a political settlement with the Taliban but does not want to lead a peace process that would impose a solution, Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar said on February 22. "We will support any (peace efforts) that are Afghan-led, Afghan-owned and Afghan-driven. This is our first and last pre-requisite," Khar said. Dawn, February 23, 2012.
Afghan officials in talks with TTP, reveals Kandahar Peace Council head Ata Mohammad Ahmadi:Afghan officials are holding talks with the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the head of Kandahar Peace Council, Ata Mohammad Ahmadi, said on February 21. Ahmadi said the officials had been meeting for "some time" with mid-level TTP commanders in Quetta, where the leadership of the militant group is reported to be based. "In the last 10 days, our peace council delegation has gone to Quetta three times in twos and threes," he added. Dawn, February 22, 2012.