Pakistan Security Brief – April 2, 2012

Pakistan wants “key and well-defined role” in Afghan reconciliation process; U.S. agrees to pay additional levies for use of NATO supply routes; Jamaat-e-Islami rallies against U.S. drone strikes and reopening of NATO supply routes; Kashmiri lobbyist sentenced to two years in prison for receiving funds from Pakistan and ISI; Violent protests in Karachi’s Lyari area; President Zardari holds PPP core committee meeting to discuss violence in Karachi; Interior Minister orders security improvements for Karachi; Sindh High Court to hear petition on over 400 killings in Karachi; Militants launch cross-border attack in Mohmand agency; TTP conducting “moral policing” in Afghanistan; Prime Minister Gilani and Chinese Vice Premier strengthen bilateral ties at Boao Forum for Asia; Pakistan to purchase electricity from Iran; Brigadier Ali Khan boycotts court martial proceedings; Osama bin Laden’s family sentenced to 45-day imprisonment; “Memogate” commission to resume case on April 5.

U.S.-Pakistan Relations

  • Members of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security (PCNS) met on Saturday and agreed to revise two of the clauses in their recommendations on the future of U.S.-Pakistan relations. According to the revised recommendations, foreign security contractors will not be allowed to conduct covert operations in Pakistan, and the Pakistani government will not allow any of its bases to be used by foreign forces. The initial recommendations stated that foreign security contractors needed to make their activities “transparent and subject to Pakistani law,” and that Parliament needed to approve the use of Pakistani bases by foreign forces. During Saturday’s meeting, one PCNS member suggested that the U.S. should ensure that Pakistan will have a “key and well-defined role” in the Afghan reconciliation process.[1]

  • U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Thomas Nides is expected to travel to Islamabad this week to try to formulate a new agreement for transporting supplies for NATO and U.S. forces in Afghanistan through Pakistan. U.S. and Pakistani officials said that after recent talks between the civil and military leadership of both countries, the U.S. has agreed to compensate Pakistan for the damage caused to its infrastructure by NATO containers and to pay additional transit fees on NATO supplies. According to a U.S. official, even with the compensation and extra fees, Pakistan is still “the cheapest and most viable option.”[2]

  • The Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) criticized the Pakistani government’s policy on U.S. drone strikes and the potential reopening of the NATO supply routes at a rally known as “Jalsa-e-Inqilab” in Mamund, Bajaur agency on Sunday.[3]

  • A federal court in Alexandria, VA sentenced Syed Fai, the executive director of the Washington-based Kashmiri American Council, to two years in prison followed by three years of probation for conspiracy and tax violations in a scheme involving using straw donors to cover up the fact that Pakistan had given Fai $3.5 million to fund his lobbying efforts. U.S. authorities said that some of the money came from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Directorate, and that Fai failed to register as a foreign government agent as required by U.S. law. The prosecution argued that Fai had been hiding the fact that the Pakistani government had been secretly funding his efforts to influence U.S. policy on Kashmir, but the Pakistani government has denied any knowledge of Fai’s activities. [4]

Karachi

  • Residents of Karachi’s Lyari area took to the streets on Monday to protest the “biased operation” of law enforcement agencies against Lyari residents. The protesters turned violent, using stones, hand grenades and rockets to attack the police. According to Dawn, the protests were triggered by Sunday’s killing of an activist of the banned Peoples Aman Committee (PAC) by police officials. Vice President of the Pakistan Peoples Party Lyari wing Hassan Soomro was shot and killed during violence near Aath Chowk, Lyari on Monday. At least two other people have reportedly been killed and 20 others injured including five policemen.[5]

  • President Asif Ali Zardari held a PPP core committee meeting on Monday to discuss the worsening law and order situation in Karachi, particularly in Lyari. High level law enforcement officials also attended the meeting, and Zardari ordered them to install police check posts at all entry and exit points of the city. He also ordered the officials to treat the situation in Lyari as an emergency and handle it immediately.[6]

  • The Sindh Chief Minister and the Interior Minister co-chaired a meeting on Sunday to discuss measures to address the violence in Karachi. In the meeting, it was decided that all political parties would remove their flags from public property, there would be increased patrolling in sensitive areas, pickets set up on the “most vulnerable” roads, and sharpshooters and 24-hour security posted at certain bridges in the city.[7]

  • The Sindh High Court has agreed to hear a petition on April 18 filed by Rana Faizul Hasan of the United Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, which states that over 400 people have been killed in Karachi in the past three months. The petition appeals to the court to remove the Inspector General of Sindh police and the Director General of the Rangers in Sindh, since they have failed to maintain law and order in Karachi.[8]

Militancy

  • Approximately 50 to 60 militants launched a cross-border attack on a check post in the Baizai sub-division of Mohmand agency on Monday. Four security personnel and 13 militants were killed in the clash, and five security personnel are missing and possibly in the custody of the militants.[9]

  • The Afghan police said on Sunday that the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) have introduced “moral policing” in parts of northeastern Afghanistan, which involves armed vigilantes patrolling the streets to stop “un-Islamic” activities. However, both the TTP and the Afghan Taliban denied this claim.[10]

  • A bomb exploded at a taxi stand in the Sadda Market area of Khyber agency on Monday, killing one person and wounding 13 others.[11]

  • Armed men kidnapped four truck drivers en route to Quetta near Bakhtyarabad in Bolan district late Sunday night. One of the drivers managed to escape, but the others remain missing. Transporters blocked the National Highway near Sibi on Monday to protest the kidnappings.[12]

International Relations

Court Martial

  • Brigadier Ali Khan, who is currently facing court martial proceedings for conspiring to overthrow the government, boycotted Monday’s court proceedings, because military authorities would not let him see the “counsel of his choice.”[16]

Osama bin Laden

  • On Monday, a Pakistani court sentenced Osama bin Laden’s three wives and two daughters to a fine of 10,000 ($110) rupees each and a 45-day imprisonment. According to the women’s lawyers, their period of detention began on March 3 when they were formally arrested, and after the detention ends, they will all be deported to their respective home countries.[17]

Memogate

  • The “memogate” commission will resume hearing the case on April 5, and it has summoned Pakistan’s former Ambassador to the U.S. Hussain Haqqani and Chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front Yasin Malik to appear on that day to record their testimonies.[18]

 

 

 



[1] “PCNS recommends no foreign footprint on Pakistani soil,” Dawn, March 31, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/03/31/pcns-recommends-no-foreign-footprint-on-pakistani-soil.html
Zahid Gishkori, “PCNS recommendations: ‘Pakistan should have clear-cut role in Afghan Endgame,’” Express Tribune, April 1, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358009/pcns-recommendations-pakistan-should-have-clear-cut-role-in-afghan-endgame/
[2] Kamran Yousaf, “Resetting ties: US deputy secretary to arrive in Islamabad this week,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358531/resetting-ties-us-deputy-secretary-to-arrive-in-islamabad-this-week/
Kamran Yousaf, “Reopening NATO supply lines: US ready to offer more compensation,” Express Tribune, March 31, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/357739/reopening-nato-supply-lines-us-ready-to-offer-more-compensation/
[3] “‘Jalsa-e-Inqilab’: Drone attacks, possible reopening of NATO route criticized,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358628/jalsa-e-inqilab-drone-attacks-possible-reopening-of-nato-route-criticised/
[4] “Kashmiri man gets US prison term in lobbying case,” Reuters, March 30, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/03/30/kashmiri-man-gets-us-prison-term-in-lobbying-case.html
[5] “Violence revisits Lyari: Three including PPP leader shot dead,” Dawn, April 2, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/04/02/firing-incidents-in-karachi-claim-five-lives-many-injured.html
“Lyari violence: Rockets, hand grenades used during clashes,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358621/protestors-police-clash-in-lyari-amid-mounting-tensions/
[6] “President summons core committee meeting over Karachi,” Dawn, April 2, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/04/02/president-summons-core-committee-meeting-over-lyari.html
[7] “Removal of party flags from public places ordered,” Dawn, April 2, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/04/02/removal-of-party-flags-from-public-places-ordered.html
[8] Zeeshan Mujahid, “Court summons top officials in Karachi killings petition,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358611/court-summons-top-officials-in-karachi-killings-petition/
[9] Iftikhar Firdous, “13 militants, 4 security personnel killed in Mohmand,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358625/14-militants-3-soldiers-killed-in-mohmand-clash-officials/
“Four soldiers killed, five missing in Mohmand Agency,” Dawn, April 2, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/04/02/four-soldiers-killed-five-missing-in-mohmand.html
[10] Tahir Khan, “Vigilante squads: TTP introduces ‘moral policing’ in Afghanistan,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358542/vigilante-squads-ttp-introduces-moral-policing-in-afghanistan/
[11] “Blast in Khyber market area kills one,” Dawn, April 2, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/04/02/blast-at-sadda-market-kills-one.html
[12] Shehzad Baloch, “Lack of security: Transporters stage protest against driver kidnappings, block National Highway,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358647/transporters-block-highway-near-sibi-to-protest-kidnappings/
[13] “Boao forum for Asia: Gilani says China’s enemy is our enemy,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358540/boao-forum-for-asia-gilani-says-chinas-enemy-is-our-enemy/
[14] “Pakistan to purchase electricity from Iran: Gilani,” Dawn, April 1, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/04/01/pakistan-to-purchase-electricity-from-iran-gilani.html
[15] “Pakistan president to visit India on April 8,” AFP, April 2, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/04/02/pakistan-president-to-visit-india-on-april-8.html
[16] Mudassir Raja, “Registering protest: On being refused lawyer of choice, Brig Ali boycotts proceedings,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358623/brig-ali-boycotts-court-martial-proceedings/
[17] “Illegal stay: 45-day imprisonment, Rs50,000 fine for Bin Laden's family,” Express Tribune, April 2, 2012. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/358643/illegal-stay-45-day-imprisonment-rs10000-fine-for-bin-ladens-family/
[18] “Memo commission to meet on April 5,” APP, March 31, 2012. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2012/03/31/memo-commission-to-meet-on-april-5.html