Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Pakistani Taliban Vow Series Of Attacks On US, UK, French Targets

US Soldiers From Viper Company (Bravo) 1-26 Infantry Head For A Foot Patrol At Combat Outpost (COP) Sabari In Khost Province, East Of Afghanistan

TTP To Avenge Death Of Osama Bin Laden
ISLAMABAD, June 27, (Agencies): Pakistan’s Taleban, a close ally of al Qaeda, has threatened to carry out a series of attacks against American, British and French targets to avenge the death of Osama bin Laden.
Soon you will see attacks against America and Nato countries, and our first priorities in Europe will be France and Britain,” deputy Pakistani Taleban leader Wali-ur-Rehman said in a videotape aired on Al Arabiya over the weekend.
The Tehrik-e-Taleban (TTP), or Taleban Movement of Pakistan, is blamed for many of the suicide bombings across the country and remains highly dangerous despite a series of army offensives against its strongholds in the northwest on the Afghan border.
It has not demonstrated an ability to stage sophisticated attacks in the West, however.
The TTP’s one apparent bid to inflict carnage in the United States failed. The group claimed responsibility for the botched car bomb attack in New York’s Times Square last year.

But American intelligence agencies take it seriously. It was later added to the United States’ list of foreign terrorist organisations.
The video showed Rehman flanked by armed followers walking through rough mountain terrain. He sits on a blanket beside a sniper’s rifle on a hilltop and explains the TTP’s plans.
“We selected 10 targets to avenge the death of bin Laden,” said Rehman, a former teacher who the Pakistani media have described as more sober and experienced than other TTP leaders.
Rehman, also seen firing a machinegun into the distance in the video, did not elaborate.
But he said the first revenge operation was the Taleban siege of a Pakistani naval base in Karachi last month, one of several setbacks the military has suffered since US special forces killed bin Laden on Pakistani soil on May 2.
The TTP regards the Pakistan army as a US puppet.
It has kept the government on the defensive since bin Laden’s death, staging suicide bombings, large-scale attacks on security forces with large numbers of fighters, and employing new tactics.

A Taleban militant and his wife carried out a weekend shooting and suicide bombing on a police station that killed 12 policemen.
The United States has been leaning hard on Pakistan to crack down on militancy since it was discovered that bin Laden may have been living in the country for years. More Pakistani cooperation is needed as Washington seeks to wind down the US-led war in Afghanistan and defeat al-Qaeda and its allies.
But Pakistan’s generals are furious because the United States kept them in the dark over the bin Laden raid.
The Pakistani and Afghan Taleban move easily across the porous frontier and provide each other with shelter and intelligence, complicating efforts to root out militancy in the region US President Barack Obama has described as “the most dangerous place in the world”.

Rehman has pledged allegiance to Afghan Taleban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar, and repeated that pledge on the tape.
Meanwhile, Pakistan on Monday said that five “major attacks” launched from Afghanistan had killed 55 security personnel in a month, stepping up a row with Kabul over cross-border attacks.

Afghanistan last week expressed serious concern about Pakistani artillery shelling, saying that four children were killed last Thursday and warning that attacks from Pakistan could harm “improving trust and cooperation”.
Pakistani army spokesman Major General Athar Abbas said he could not rule out that a “few accidental rounds” could have been fired across the border by security forces targeting fleeing militants, but said Pakistan had also suffered.
“In the last month, there have been five major attacks from Afghan side of the border where 250-300 terrorists crossed over and assaulted our border posts in Dir, Mohmand and Bajaur,” he said.

The attacks resulted in the deaths of 55 paramilitary and pro-government tribal militiamen and wounded 80 others, Abbas said.
Relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan have long been strained over mutual accusations of responsibility over Islamist militants fighting against both governments, particularly in the porous border area.
Afghan and US officials say militants launching attacks on government and foreign targets in Afghanistan make use of rear bases in Pakistan. Pakistan says it has lost thousands of soldiers fighting militants.

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