Pakistan Security Brief - December 2, 2010

                                           Pakistan Security Brief – December 2, 2010 

ISI director told parliament that India, Russia, and UAE were supporting Balochistan insurgency; President Zardari asked UAE to provide his family refuge in the event of his death; NATO supply truck attacked in Mardan; ANP confirms Chief of Army Staff General Kayani offered party chief Asfandyar Wali Khan the position of president.

 

WikiLeaks Cables

  • In 2008, the director general of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Lieutenant General Ahmad Shuja Pasha, reportedly gave a closed session parliamentary briefing alleging that India, Russia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) were all involved in supporting Balochi insurgents. During the briefing, Lt. Gen. Pasha showed parliamentarians pictures and video depicting brutally “inhumane an un-Islamic” activities carried out by militants in the region. Pasha also told the parliament that India had established nine training camps for the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) along the Afghan border while the UAE and Russia were also providing “arms and funding” to the BLA.[1]

  • According to a diplomatic memo, UAE foreign minister Sheik Abdulla bin Zayed al Nahyan told U.S. officials in January 2010 that Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari had made an appeal to the UAE to grant his family refuge in the country in the event of Zardari’s death. Sheikh Abdullah stressed the “sensitivity of the information” but did not indicate whether the UAE had granted the appeal.[2]

  • A leaked cable from October 2009 reveals that ISI director general Lieutenant General Ahmad Shuja Pasha was in contact with Israeli officials to warn them of potential attacks on Israeli targets in India. Lt. Gen. Pasha reportedly told U.S. ambassador Anne Patterson that he had also traveled to Iran and Oman in order to “follow up” on reports of future terror attacks in India that he had received while in Washington.[3]

  • During a 2007 meeting former President Pervez Musharraf reportedly told U.S. Senator John McCain that Osama bin Laden and his top deputy Ayman al Zawahiri could be hiding out in Bajaur Agency. The leaked cable said that Musharraf possessed no solid evidence on Bin Laden’s whereabouts but did point out that Musharraf’s assertions were not completely unfounded. Musharraf also said that Taliban founder Mullah Omar “would be mad to be in Quetta” and that most of the Taliban was still in the Pashtun-dominated areas of Afghanistan.[4]

  • U.S. and Pakistani officials are making efforts to minimize the political fallout stemming from the thousands of leaked diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks earlier this week that has shed light on the tenuous and complicated relationship between the two countries. U.S. ambassador Cameron Munter met with Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani in Islamabad on Wednesday to discuss and downplay the leaks’ significance. Gilani said that Pakistan’s interests “would not be compromised by such mischief” while Munter made the assurance that the two countries would work together to “get past the WikiLeaks problems.”[5]

 

Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa

  • The driver of a NATO supply truck bound for Afghanistan was killed on Thursday when suspected Taliban militants opened fire on his vehicle in Mardan district. A local police official said that the attack occurred in Suki village while the vehicle was en route to Kabul. No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.[6]

  • Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa’s Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain said on Wednesday that Awami National Party (ANP) chief Asfandyar Wali Khan had indeed been offered the presidency of Pakistan but said that Khan had declined to accept. Hussain said that although Khan was honored by the offer, the ANP believed that the party with the required number of seats in parliament should control the presidency. The announcement confirms a diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks that Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani had extended an offer to Khan for the position of president over current President Asif Ali Zardari.[7]

 

Floods

  • The UN’s top humanitarian affairs and emergency relief official Baroness Valerie Amos visited flood victims in Pakistan on Thursday. Baroness Amos said that part of the purpose to her trip was to remind flood victims that they have “not been forgotten.” A UN spokesman highlighted the critical need for funding and support in flood-affected areas. Millions of people are still dependent on food aid and the UN estimates that it could take as long as two years before crops recover in some areas.[8]

  • The U.S. military concluded its air missions for flood relief and rescue operations in Pakistan on Thursday. U.S. ambassador Cameron Munter and Corps Commander Peshawar, Lieutenant General Asif Yaseen both attended a ceremony at Ghazi Airbase marking the completion of direct U.S. military assistance in the country’s flood affected areas.[9]

 

 


[1] “WikiLeaks: India, Russia, UAE supporting Baloch insurgency,” Express Trbiune, December 2, 2010. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/84902/wikileaks-india-russia-supporting-baloch-insurgency/.
[2] “Asif Zardari sought UAE haven for family: Wikileaks,” Dawn, December 2, 2010. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2010/12/02/asif-zardari-sought-uae-haven-for-family-wikileaks.html.
[3] Chris Allbritton, “Pakistan passed potential attack info to Israel,” Reuters, December 1, 2010. Available at http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6B05N720101201?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+reuters/worldNews+(News+/+US+/+International).
[4] “WikiLeaks: Musharraf believed bin Laden was in Bajaur,” Express Tribune, December 2, 2010. Available at http://tribune.com.pk/story/84889/wikileaks-musharraf-believed-bin-laden-was-in-bajaur/.
[5] Declan Walsh, “WikiLeaks cables: US and Pakistan play down impact of ‘mischief’,” The Guardian, December 1, 2010. Available at http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/dec/01/wikileaks-us-pakistan.
[6] “Militants attack NATO truck in Pakistan,” AFP, December 2, 2010. Available at http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20101202/wl_sthasia_afp/pakistanafghanistanunrestnato.
[7] “‘ANP chief declined to become president’,” Dawn, December 2, 2010. Available at http://www.dawn.com/2010/12/02/%E2%80%98anp-chief-declined-to-become-president%E2%80%99.html.
[8] “UN’s Baroness Amos visiting Pakistan flood victims,” BBC, December 2, 2010. Available at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-11896431.
[9] “US military completes relief operation in flood affected areas,” Geo, December 2, 2010. Available at http://www.geo.tv/12-2-2010/75226.htm