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Taliban pledge not to target security forces

Taliban pledge not to target security forces

PESHAWAR: On the directive of their supreme leader Mulla Mohammad Omar, the Afghan and Pakistani Taliban on Sunday formed a joint five-member Shura or council with Pakistani militant organisations, making a pledge to stop their fight against their own armed forces and instead focus their attention against the US-led forces in Afghanistan.

After weeks of hectic efforts, a high-level delegation of the Afghan Taliban, sent by the Taliban supreme leader, finally succeeded in bringing together different Pakistan militant groups on a single platform and make a promise that they would stop fighting the Pakistani security forces and end suicide attacks, kidnappings for ransom and killing of innocent people in the country, particularly in the militancy-hit tribal areas.

Taliban sources said Mulla Omar was not happy with the Pakistani Taliban for carrying out suicide attacks, kidnapping people for ransom and killing innocent people. He had also sent his senior commanders to persuade them to stop the “un-Islamic” activities or to stop referring to him (Mulla Omar) as their supreme leader.

Also, the sources said that Mulla Omar was worried by the increasing number of Pakistani Taliban diverting their attention from Afghanistan to Pakistan and making it difficult for the Afghan Taliban to continue their resistance against the powerful Nato and Isaf forces.

Mulla Omar, according to Taliban sources, wanted the Pakistani Taliban groups to focus on Afghanistan, where their fight against the foreign forces was in a decisive phase. “Convey my message to the Pakistani Taliban that you have forgotten the real purpose, which is to fight the invading forces in Afghanistan and liberate it from their occupation,” said a Taliban leader quoting Mulla Omar.

Also, he said Mulla Omar was very upset at frequent kidnapping of people on suspicion of spying for the US forces and their merciless killing and urged them to stop it immediately. Pakistani militant groups, which signed the accord and promised to work together with the Afghan Taliban, stop kidnappings for ransom and killing of innocent people, included Maulvi Nazeer group in South Waziristan, Hakimullah Mahsud group, Maulana Waliur Rahman group, both operating in South Waziristan and part of the TTP, Hafiz Gul Bahadur group in North Waziristan and the powerful Haqqani Network.

The Taliban on Sunday issued a leaflet in North Waziristan in which all militant groups were directed to stop kidnappings for ransom and killing of innocent people; otherwise, the five-member Shura would investigate if it received any complaint and suggest punishment for any group found guilty.

All groups had provided one member each to the five-member Shura that was also given the task to resolve differences between the militant groups besides discouraging kidnappings for ransom and killing of innocent people.

It was a surprise that the TTP leader Hakimullah Mahsud and his deputy Maulana Waliur Rahman were shown in the leaflet sending different people to the Shura to represent them.

Hakimullah Mahsud has given the name of Maulvi Noor Saeed, the TTP leader in Orakzai Agency, to represent him in the Shura while Maulvi Azmatullah will represent Maulana Waliur Rahman in the forum.

Some sources, however, argued that Hakimullah Mahsud’s nominee would represent the TTP while Maulana Waliur Rahman’s representative would be sitting in the council on behalf of the Taliban of South Waziristan.

The powerful Haqqani Network has chosen Maulvi Saeedullah; Hafiz Gul Bahadur selected Maulvi Sadar Hayat and Maulvi Nazeer nominated Hafiz Ameer Hamza to represent them in the council that would be called “Shura-e-Murakeba”. The militant groups were directed to cooperate with the Shura members in their job. It also threatened that any individual or group found guilty would be dealt with according to the Islamic Sharia.

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