SOUTH ASIA INTELLIGENCE REVIEW
The United States of America has accused Pakistan of illegally modifying the Harpoon anti-ship missile and maritime surveillance aircraft P-3C for land attacks for potential use against India, a clear violation of United States law. The Barack Obama administration, reported The New York Times on August 30, 2009, has already registered its protest with Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani in June 2009. The modified version of these missiles could "strike land targets" and posed "a potential threat to India," the report quoted senior US administration and Congressional officials as saying. Citing unnamed officials from the administration and Congress, The New York Times said Washington has also accused Pakistan of modifying American-made P-3C aircraft for land-attack missions.
US officials suspect that Pakistan has modified the missiles, a violation of the Arms Control Export Act. "Whatever their origin, the missiles would be a significant new entry into Pakistan's arsenal against India. They would enable Pakistan's small navy to strike targets on land, complementing the sizable land-based missile arsenal that Pakistan has developed," The New York Times said. Between 1985 and 1988, the US had provided 165 Harpoon missiles to Pakistan.
In addition to Pakistan’s rapid expansion of its nuclear arsenal, Islamabad is also in the process of developing weapons’ technologies that have obviously very little to do with counter-insurgency – the principal rationale of current US defence supplies to Pakistan. The Obama regime’s indictment on the Harpoon missiles issue only confirms India’s long-held position that US aid, both military and non-military, is largely used by Pakistan to target India. Indian External Affairs Minister S. M. Krishna had, in fact, stated as recently as on August 17, 2009, that India had conveyed to the US Government that "whatever aid in whatever form has been given to them (Pakistan) is invariably directed against India and this has been emphatically registered with the US Government." The statement was a reaction to the Barack Obama Administration’s plans to provide more military aid to Pakistan.
Pakistan has, quite predictably, denied the US allegations that it illegally modified the Harpoon missiles, and claims, instead, that it developed them itself. Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry stated on August 30, 2009, that it "categorically rejected" the article in The New York Times. In a brief statement, the Foreign Office spokesman said "no modification has been made to the missiles under reference."
It is, however, not only the Harpoon missile and P-3C alone which constitute Pakistan’s project to target India. Members of the US Congress, the Council on Foreign Relations says, have been told in confidential briefings that Pakistan is rapidly adding to its nuclear arsenal even while it is racked by insurgency, raising questions on Capitol Hill about whether billions of dollars in proposed military aid are being diverted to Pakistan's nuclear programme. Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, confirmed the assessment of Pakistan’s expanded nuclear arsenal in a one-word answer to a question on May 14, 2009, during a Senate testimony.
In a paper written for the Bulletin for Atomic Scientists, Robert Norris of the Natural Resources Defense Council and Hans Kristensen of the Federation of American Scientists have stated that Pakistan is "busily enhancing its capabilities across the board," with new nuclear-capable ballistic missiles "being readied for deployment, and two nuclear capable cruise missiles under development." Kristensen told Times of India on September 2, 2009, "The fact that they are preparing nuclear-capable cruise missiles suggests their scientists have been able to miniaturize nuclear warheads by using plutonium… They are shifting their nuclear base from uranium to plutonium... in a sense, they are turning a chapter." Kristensen also said Pakistan's weapons and delivery systems can be assumed to be India-specific because Islamabad "has not declared any other adversary."
Responding to reports on Pakistani efforts at increasing its nuclear strength, the Indian Army chief, General Deepak Kapoor, noted, moreover, "There is a difference between having a degree deterrence, which is required for protection, and going beyond that. If the news reports of (Pakistan) having 70 to 90 atomic bombs are correct, then I think they are going well beyond the requirement of deterrence."
Amidst all this, it needs mention that Washington has initiated efforts to ensure the security of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal of approximately 70-90 weapons to prevent them from falling into the hands of Islamist militants. So far, America’s aid to Pakistan’s nuclear infrastructure has been limited to a "$100 million classified program to help Pakistan secure its weapons and materials from seizure by al Qaeda, the Taliban or "insiders" with insurgent loyalties." Bruce Riedel, who served as the co-author of the review of Obama’s Afghanistan-Pakistan strategy, reflected the US Administration’s concern, observing that Pakistan "has more terrorists per square mile than anyplace else on earth, and it has a nuclear weapons program that is growing faster than anyplace else on earth."
Despite the existing institutional safeguards, insecurity regarding Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal persists. While the forward march of the Taliban – al Qaeda combine within the context of Pakistan’s progressive implosion has contributed global apprehensions, these have been heightened by past instances where radical elements have managed to penetrate the country’s nuclear establishment. The case of the A.Q. Khan network is well documented, but there has also been the Ummah Tamir-e-Nau: Dr. Sultan Bashiruddin Mahmood, former Director General of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC), formed the UmmahTamir-e-Nau in March 2000 after resigning from the PAEC in 1999. After a great deal of US pressure, Mahmood was arrested on October 23, 2001, from Islamabad, along with his associate Abdul Majeed, who was arrested at Lahore. They were, however, released shortly thereafter.
Within the current milieu, any decisive advance of the Islamist militant enterprise in Pakistan increases the probabilities that terrorist groups could eventually access the nukes. Pakistani reassurances that the weapons are out of the Taliban – al Qaeda reach notwithstanding, the security of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal remains a cause for global concern. While the idea that terrorist groups could access Pakistan’s nuclear weapons is, at present, the worst case scenario, if Pakistan’s present ‘descent into chaos’ continues, the nuclear question will become critical.
The US Congress is presently in the process of approving a legislation which triples non-military aid to Pakistan to total USD 7.5 billion over the next five years. Obama administration officials reportedly stated, moreover, that they had communicated to Congress that their intent was "to assure that military aid to Pakistan was directed toward counterterrorism and not diverted." Non-military aid is perceived by many a policymaker in the United States as an instrument in realizing the core American objective of neutralizing the threat from Taliban – al Qaeda in Pakistan. President Obama continues to believe that aid can create "reconstruction opportunity zones" in Pakistan. However, US aid to Pakistan has been overwhelmingly military oriented. Of a total of USD 12.3 billion in US aid to Pakistan since 2002, less than 27 per cent was in the realm of development and economic assistance.
Since 9/11, US funding, according to Azeem Ibrahim of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University, has been intended for the following five purposes: to cover the extra cost to Pakistan’s military of fighting terrorism; to provide Pakistan with military equipment to fight terrorism; to provide development and humanitarian assistance; covert funds; and cash transfers directly to Pakistan’s budget. In a July 2009 paper, Azeem Ibrahim notes:
Moreover, there is also clear evidence of corruption within the Pakistani Army. For instance,
[Ibrahim analysed documents recently disclosed by the US Government to compile a review of American aid to Pakistan]
Pentagon documents have reportedly revealed Pakistan has used a substantial proportion of military aid from the US meant to combat the Taliban-Al Qaeda combine, to boost its Army with modern weapons and equipment for conventional warfare against India. Pentagon documents revealed that most of the US defence supply to Pakistan after 9/11 under Foreign Military Financing had nothing to do with the war on terror.
There is more evidence of Pakistan’s abuse of trust. The Federal Government has virtually shelved a US-aided, multi-million dollar plan to reform madrassas (seminaries) considered nurseries of terrorism, as it has failed to garner the support of clerics, Daily Times reported on July 17, 2009. The Government had initiated the project in 2002 in an attempt to introduce a secular curriculum in the seminaries. The project sought to introduce computer skills, science, social studies and English into the predominantly religious curriculum at thousands of madrassas across Pakistan. "We had a huge budget of Rs 5,759 million (USD 71 million) to provide madrassa students with formal education but we could not utilise it," Education Ministry spokesman Atiqur Rehman said. The Government failed to meet the target of reforming around 8,000 seminaries within five years. "We reached 507 madrassas only, spending Rs. 333 million and the rest of the [money] – Rs 5,426 million – has lapsed," Rehman said. "The Interior Ministry held talks with various madrassas... but many of them refused to accept the Government’s intervention," said Mufti Gulzar Ahmed Naeemi, a senior official of the Sunni clerics’ alliance, the Jamaat Ahl-e-Sunnat. Most of the officially estimated 13,000 seminaries (unofficial estimates range between 15,000 and 25,000, and in some cases go as high as 40,000) in Pakistan, with an approximate enrollment of 1.5 million students, have squarely rejected the tentative reforms – in essence requiring the registration of seminaries and the maintenance of accounts, including records of domestic and foreign donors, as well as the teaching of "secular" subjects as part of the proposed curriculum.
The US and others in the international community are apprehensive that an augmenting economic crisis in Pakistan will help al Qaeda and its local affiliates to further destablise the country. The Asia Society, for instance, said in a report on April 2, 2009, that Pakistan needed up to $50 billion over the next five years to avoid an economic meltdown that risked turning the country over to militants. While this may be a risk, there are far more quantifiable problems within Pakistan which threaten to push the country over the tipping point. Essentially, however, the idea that one ought to inject huge amount of aid to help Pakistan stay afloat is fraught with great danger.
On the ground in Pakistan, the United States simply lacks the institutional capacity required to monitor the implementation of any of its targeted aid programmes. And since most aid is being routed through existing and largely unaccountable state channels within Pakistan, capacity-building and attempts to promote democracy are bound to suffer.
The Bush Administration in the past and now the Obama regime, have erroneously thought it fit to give Pakistan a carte blanche in the hope that Islamabad will combat terrorism. In fact, there exists a constituency within the US which now wants to provide aid as also arm Pakistan, irrespective of the situation. This idea of a no strings attached aid policy is, however, immensely dangerous not only for the region but for the US as well. Both the past trajectory and Pakistan’s current behaviour are testimony to the fact that none of the extensive aid packages has the potential to lead to a radical course correction in Pakistan. Neutralization of Islamist extremism in Pakistan will necessitate what scholar Ahmed Rashid describes as a "strategic paradigm shift by the Government and the Army." Such a shift, he argues, would affect domestic and foreign policy, relations with Pakistan's neighbours and mandate a different set of national interest priorities. Pakistan is most certainly not ready for any of these as yet and, more significantly, any abrupt course correction will threaten its very identity and existence. Consequently, there should now be a radical change in the framework of response by the international community, especially the US, which is the key interlocutor, when it comes to dealing with Pakistan.
exists for rogue regimes in Pakistan as far as their
domestic and foreign policies are concerned. The system
of aid with no penalties is counter-productive since
a proportion of every dollar given as aid by the US
or other donors eventually ends up, directly or indirectly,
sustaining the jihad. Stringent conditionalities
must be introduced in aid policies towards Pakistan
and economic sanctions may, indeed, need to be imposed,
since aid accountability is imperative to securing any
of Washington’s and the international community’s goals
Weekly Fatalities: Major Conflicts in South Asia
August 31- September 6, 2009
Foreign militants use country as transit point, reveals arrested ARCF militant: The arrested top leader of the India Asif Reza Commando Force (ARCF), Mufti Obaidullah, revealed during interrogation that militants fighting in Jammu and Kashmir have regularly used Bangladesh as a transit point to travel to Pakistan and have built safe havens in that country to shelter and train militants for terrorist operations in the region. Obaidullah said Pakistani militants crossed the Line of Control (LoC) to enter India to run terrorist operations and fight with Government forces in Jammu and Kashmir and then cross the border into Bangladesh to fly back to Pakistan. "As it was tough to cross back to Pakistan through the India-Pakistan border, the Mujahideen would cross to Bangladesh and then left for their destinations using fake passports and visas," the interrogation statement said. He said that his student Selim and close associate Jalal helped him in this operation. Obaidullah also said he had built a safe-house in Habiganj in 2002 to shelter fugitive terrorists, and recruit and train Bangladeshis to take part in terrorist attacks in Jammu and Kashmir, India and Pakistan. Obaidullah reportedly built the safe-shelter under the cover of a kindergarten named 'Noor Shah Islami Kindergarten' in Habiganj District. One of the operations chiefs of the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) in Bangladesh, Faisal alias Khurram Khaiyam alias Abdullah, provided BNR 18,000 in two installments to Obaidullah to construct the house.
In his statement, Obaidullah said that several other militants in Bangladesh visited his safe-house, including Moulana Mohiuddin, who he knew from the Deoband madrassa (seminary), and Harkat-ul-Jihad-al Islami Bangladesh (HuJI-B) leader Mufti Abdur Rouf. Later, the then ARCF chief, Asif Reza, ordered Habibullah and Jamal to open a training camp for Bangladeshi recruits that would also serve as a safe shelter for Pakistani and Indian militants, according to Obaidullah's statement. In 2005, Obaidullah met ARCF chief Amir Reza, Asif Reza's brother, at Khurram's house near the Noorani mosque in Dhaka's Goran area. The Daily Star, September 2, 2009.
Former Nepal Prince and son of a former Nepal Minister linked to ISI and Dawood Ibrahim, reveals arrested Nepali nationals: The Madhya Pradesh Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) on August 31, 2009, arrested two Nepali nationals, identified as Rajesh Gupta and Ateeq Ahmad, along with Fake Indian Currency Notes (FICN). During interrogation, they revealed that Nepal's former crown prince, Paras, son of King Gyanendra, and the son of a former Nepalese forest minister, Salim Mian Ansari, were the kingpins of the racket. Rajesh Gupta and Ateeq Ahmad also stated that Paras was working with the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Pakistan's external intelligence agency, and gangster Dawood Ibrahim, who is reportedly hiding in Karachi in Pakistan. Yunus Ansari is also a business partner of Paras. Gupta and Ahmad were trying to board a Gorakhpur-bound train at Bhopal Railway Station on August 29 when the Police arrested them along with 220 FICN of INR 500 denominations. The notes were printed in Nepal. "This is the first time we have caught fake note smugglers red-handed in Madhya Pradesh,'' said Deputy Inspector General of ATS, Pawan Shrivastava. Gupta and Ahmad are reportedly businessmen who are considered third level operators in the FICN racket. Police said there are five-levels in the operation, starting with the masterminds based in Pakistan and Nepal. The last line is mostly petty criminals in India's metros and other cities. "It's an intricate network. The ISI has recruited large number of agents like Gupta and Ahmad who push crores of fake currency notes across the open borders of Nepal,'' said ATS chief Shrivastava. Rajesh Gupta and Ateeq Ahmad brought the fake currency notes to Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. They were in touch with at least 40 persons in Madhya Pradesh who work as their last links in the racket. The two have been remanded in Police custody until September 8. Times of India, September 1, 2009.
India will retaliate if Pakistan continues with cease-fire violations: The Indian Army Chief General Deepak Kapoor said on September 4, 2009, that India would be forced to retaliate in case the Pakistani Army continues to violate the cease-fire and tries to push in militants through the border under the cover of gunfire. Reacting to queries on the increase in the number of infiltration bids in Jammu and Kashmir, General Kapoor said this was consistent with the trend observed through the years that more and more militants want to enter the Valley before the arrival of the winter season, with Pakistani soldiers trying to divert attention by firing from across the border. "We understand their tactics and will take appropriate steps," he said in New Delhi. "As far as possible, we exercise maximum restraint. But if such ceasefire violations occur, it is automatic that at some stage, we will have to retaliate," he said. The CoAS also said India had been routinely taking up the issue of cease-fire violations during border meetings with Pakistan. "Our effort is to continue the cease-fire so that there are not many casualties and the two countries are able to maintain good relations," he added. Indian Express, September 5, 2009.
Process of integration and rehabilitation of Maoist combatants to be completed within the next six months: The Special Committee for Supervision, Integration and Rehabilitation of Maoist combatants decided on September 1, 2009, to complete the process of integration and rehabilitation of Maoist combatants within the next six months. "We have decided to extend the tenure of the Technical Committee under the Special Committee for the next three months effective from today," Nepali Congress leader Ram Sharan Mahat told reporters in Singhadurbar after the meeting, adding, "Beginning Monday, the Committee will complete its work within six months." Ekantipur online, September 2, 2009.
99 militants and 20 soldiers among 124 persons killed during the week in NWFP: Security Forces (SFs) on September 6 killed three Taliban militants and arrested 12 others from various parts of Swat. "On a tip off, Security Forces conducted a search and cordon operation in Liluani near Alpurai. In an exchange of fire, three Taliban militants were killed and two were apprehended," an Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) statement said. Dead bodies of two Taliban militants, identified as Anwar Shah and Zahir Shah, were also found from Nawagai.
Suspected militants shot dead two Frontier Constabulary (FC) troopers in Nasir Bagh suburbs of Peshawar, the NWFP capital, early in the morning on September 4. An official of the Nasir Bagh Police Station said that the FC personnel were on routine patrol when, at around 3 AM, unidentified people armed with sophisticated weapons attacked them. He said the troops also returned fire. In the encounter, FC soldiers, Mula Jan and Arbab, residents of Bara in Khyber Agency, were injured. They later died at the Khyber Teaching Hospital. Cantonment Circle Superintendent of Police Nisar Khan Marwat said the incident appeared to be a targeted killing.
SFs on September 4 killed one terrorist in the Swat District. "Security forces conducted search operation at Peochar and killed one terrorist," the ISPR said in its daily update.
A militia (Qaumi Lashkar) killed three militants in an exchange of fire in the Kabal sub-division of the Swat District, while seven militants were arrested in the area during a search operation by the SFs on September 3. Sources said the militiamen traded fire with the militants in the Galoch area in Kabal, killing three unidentified militants. Besides, bodies of two militants, identified as Rozi Khan and Ansar, shot dead by unknown persons, were recovered in the Panr and Haji Baba areas.
Two girls were killed in a grenade attack on a house in the Sokri Hassankhel area of Bannu District on September 2. Police said unidentified persons lobbed a hand grenade at the house of Dil Faraz in Sokri Hassankhel area, killing his two daughters, 13-year old Mahala Bibi and eight-year old Sania Bibi, on the spot.
SFs killed 15 Taliban militants in fresh clashes in the Swat District on September 1. According to the Swat media centre, 15 militants were killed in clashes in Kokari and Jameel on the outskirts of Mingora, while two SF personnel were wounded.
SFs killed at least 15 Taliban militants in various clashes in the Swat District on August 31. One soldier was also killed in crossfire between the Army and the Taliban. "The Security Forces conducted a search operation in Allahabad near Charbagh. In an exchange of fire with the terrorists, five Taliban and one soldier was killed," an ISPR statement said. The SFs also killed seven Taliban militants and arrested 11 during a search operation in Maira. Further, three Taliban militants were killed during an operation in Lundai Sarand. In addition, the SFs conducted search operations in Gulkanda and Aman Kot and arrested seven militants. In another search operation in Sangota and Ahingora Cham near Fatehpur, the Army apprehended four militants.
At least 36 bodies, believed to be of militants, were found dumped in various locations of the Swat valley on August 31. Official sources said 30 bullet-riddled bodies were found dumped in the Manglawar and Banjot areas, while the body of another militant, identified as Bacha Rahman, was recovered from the Nawagai area in Barikot. Three bodies were found in the Kanju area while two were recovered from Akhund Killay. Bodies of the Taliban militants were dumped on roadsides after being killed in mysterious circumstances, the sources said. So far a total of 230 bodies have been found dumped on roads and riversides in the Swat District.
The Army-run Swat Media Centre said two militants were killed in the Kabal area during an encounter and arms were recovered from their possession. According to the Centre’s updates, several areas in Charbagh sub-division, including Banjot, Mangultan and Bashbanr, were cleared of militants. The media centre also said that, in the preceding three days, 30 Taliban militants had been killed during various operations against the militants. In the exchange of fire, one soldier was also killed, the media centre added. Dawn; Daily Times; The News, September 1-7, 2009.
148 militants and 9 civilians among 158 persons killed during the week in FATA: At least 33 militants were killed when the Security Forces (SFs) targeted two militant centres – Tarkhokas Camp and Narai Baba Markaz – on the sixth day of ‘Operation Bia Daraghlam’ in the Khyber Agency of Federal Administrated Tribal Areas (FATA) on September 6, said security sources. The sources said that both the centres had been destroyed in the offensive. "Security forces ... targeted Tarkhokas Camp [and] Narai Baba Markaz," said the Frontier Corps in a statement. "Both centres and six vehicles ... [were] destroyed. Thirty-three militants ... [were] killed." Frontier Corps spokesman Major Fazl Rehman said that helicopter gunships and fighter jets strafed the militant boltholes, with the strikes targeting the Lashkar-e-Islam (LI).
A militant was killed and nine arrested and two hideouts destroyed in the Bara Tehsil (revenue division) of Khyber Agency, said security officials. The officials said that houses and centres had also been destroyed in Narahaybaba and Darkho areas.
At least 43 militants were killed and several others were injured in a military operation in Tirah valley and Kambarkhel areas of Khyber Agency in FATA on September 5, said security sources, Daily Times reports. Troops pounded LI bases in Gogrina and Sandapal areas of Tirah valley. An LI centre – being used as a hideout and training facility – was destroyed, and at least 35 militants killed in that attack. The sources said that six militants were killed in Kambarkhel area of the Bara tehsil (revenue division), while two suspects were arrested from Shakas area. Security sources added that 15 houses were also demolished in Kambarkhel area of Khyber Agency’s Bara tehsil.
Five terrorists were killed and 24 were arrested during a clash with the Security Forces (SFs) in the Bara sub-division of Khyber Agency in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA).
SFs claimed to have killed two militants in the Ambar area, while one Mohmand Rifles trooper was killed and two others sustained injuries during a search operation in the Baizai sub-division of Mohmand Agency on September 4. Sources said the SFs exchanged fire with the militants for about three hours in Ambar area early in the day, killing two militants. There were reports that military helicopters bombarded and destroyed suspected hideouts of the militants in Atam Killay, Lakhkar Killay and Tani area in Baizai near the Afghanistan border.
Two persons, identified as Namdar Khan and Beldar Khan, were killed when an explosive device planted near their house in Ambar area went off.
During a search operation in Tani area, a Constable of the Mohmand Rifles, Shahab, was killed while two troopers, Ashiq Afridi and Mansoor Khan, sustained injuries. About 15 suspected militants were also arrested from the Tani area.
SFs killed two militant commanders and injured five others on September 3 during their offensive against militants in the Nawagai sub-division of Bajaur Agency. Official sources said that the SFs targeted positions militants with artillery in the Charmang area of Nawagai. They said that the slain militant commanders belonged to Ambar sub-division of Mohmand Agency.
A girl was killed when a mortar shell hit a house in the Ghongat Johar area of Safi sub-division in Mohmand Agency on September 3.
16 militants were killed and 35 arrested on the second day of Operation Bia Daraghlam in different parts of the Bara sub-division of Khyber Agency on September 2, Frontier Constabulary (FC) sources said. Two explosive-laden vehicles, houses of six commanders, including those of Abid Murad, Tayyab and Sabeel, and six hideouts of militants were destroyed in the operation. At least 59 militants have been killed and 78 others arrested during the operation so far. The Khyber Political Agent, Tariq Hayat Khan, told reporters that the operation would continue till the neutralization of all terrorists.
Five persons were killed when artillery and mortar shells hit a residential area in the Mohmand Agency on September 2. Three persons, identified as Gul Mohammad, Sher Mohammad and Welayat, were killed when stray shells fired from an unknown direction hit their houses in Musa Kor. Two persons were killed in shelling in Ghaljo Dara.
At least 40 militants were killed as SFs launched a massive operation in the Bara sub-division of Khyber Agency on September 1. The operation, codenamed Bia Daraghlam (here I come again) was launched in the aftermath of a spate of beheadings in the region, sources said. Locals said, nearly 35 beheaded bodies were recovered from different areas of Bara over the preceding one month. Briefing journalists about the operation, sector commander of the SFs, Brigadier Faiz, and Political Agent of the Khyber Agency Tariq Hayat Khan said 40 militants had been killed and 43 arrested. The arrested militants were produced before the media along with the arms seized during search operations. The two officials said four militant hideouts were destroyed during the operation. They also said the ground forces were supported by military helicopters that targeted the hideouts of militants. The officials said the operation was not against a particular group or individual, but to purge the area of the miscreants.
Locals said the banned Lashkar-e-Islam activists did not offer any resistance to the operation, which was launched in the morning. They had reportedly already vacated their areas to take refuge in the nearby mountains. Sources said the Frontier Corps (FC) and Army troops were taking part in the operation and reported to have captured all important militant posts at around 3 AM.
A pro-government tribal elder, Malik Walayat Shah, was shot dead by unidentified miscreants in the Haleemzai sub-division of Mohmand Agency in the night of September 1. Malik Shah was reportedly ambushed when he went out of his house after breaking the Ramzan fast in the evening at Shanikhel village. He was considered a pro-administration elder and used to visit the office of the political agent on regular basis.
The SFs arrested four suspected militants and set ablaze two houses during an operation on September 1. The SFs conducted a search operation in the Kamalkhel area of Safi sub-division and torched houses of Ikram and another suspected person for links with militants. Four suspected persons, including Liaqat, Ali Khan and Syed Ahmed, were also arrested. The troops also targeted militant hideouts in different areas of the sub-division. However, no casualty was reported.
Three militants were killed when two groups of Taliban exchanged fire in the Ferozkhel area of Orakzai Agency on August 31. Tribal sources said a group of militants belonging to the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) unit in Darra Adamkhel allegedly attacked a seminary at Mehmoodabad in Lower Kurram, triggering retaliation by the Orakzai-based TTP. Dawn; Daily Times; The News, September 1-7, 2009.
LTTE paid for attack on Sri Lankan team, reveals Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani revealed on September 6 that the terrorists who attacked the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore on March 3, 2009, were financed by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Talking to reporters after visiting Religious Affairs Minister Hamid Saeed Kazmi at the Al-Shifa Hospital, Gilani said that he had been told by Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse – during his recent visit to Libya – that the LTTE had funded terror attacks in Pakistan, including the commando-style attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team at Lahore’s Liberty market roundabout. The PM said that both countries were investigating this possibility, adding that the LTTE may have funded other attacks in Pakistan as well. The Prime Minister also said that Interior Ministry officials will visit Sri Lanka to follow up on this lead. Daily Times, September 7, 2009.