Pakistan Security Brief
Pakistan Security Brief – April 26, 2010
Military operations continue in Orakzai; security forces clash with militants in Darra Adam Khel; US drones strike North Waziristan; Frontier Corps launches operation in Khyber; security forces fire on wedding procession in Mohmand; Taliban commander suggests Punjabi connection to captors of ex-ISI officials, British journalist; militants attack NATO tankers, police in Punjab; Baloch Republican Army attacks security checkpoint in Nasirabad; nine injured in Balochistan explosion; police arrest 42 suspects in Quetta search operation; suicide bomber attacks prison van in Lower Dir; two policemen, MQM-H activist killed in Karachi; US and Pakistan sign contract for transfer of guided missile frigate; Pakistan makes request to India for extradition of Mumbai gunman; Azm-e-Nau 3 wargame enters second phase.
Military operations continue in Orakzai Agency with at least 20 militants reported killed in the Sangara area on Saturday when security forces raided an ammunition depot and fighter jets bombarded militant hideouts. On Sunday, around 15 militants were killed between a repulsed ambush on a security convoy in the Goeen area and shelling from helicopter gunships in two other locations. (For detailed daily updates on Pakistani military operations in Orakzai, CLICK HERE)
Security forces clashed with militants in Darra Adam Khel, frontier region Kohat. Two militants were reported killed in the shootout while eleven others were later arrested.
Three missiles fired from a US drone struck a militant compound in Khushali Toorkhel near Mir Ali in North Waziristan, killing at least 8 militants. Another drone strike on Saturday. Eight militants were also killed in another drone strike in the Machikhel area on Saturday. In addition, a report in the Washington Post indicates that the CIA is now equipping drones with smaller missiles which are more accurate and greatly reduce collateral damage during strikes.
The paramilitary Frontier Corps has launched an operation into the Bara sub-district of Khyber Agency. Security officials said that 12 suspected militants have been taken into custody and a curfew has been imposed in Akakhel.
Security forces opened fire on a wedding procession travelling through the Pandyalai area of Mohmand Agency on Sunday, killing one child and seriously wounding two others. Authorities say the vehicle refused to stop when signaled by security personnel at the Targhaki checkpoint.
Taliban commander Qari Zia-ur Rehman has suggested that the captors of two ex-ISI officials and a British journalist could possibly be connected to Punjabi Taliban groups and appear to have close ties to the former clerics of Lal Masjid.
On Saturday, around 30 armed militants riding in jeeps conducted a rare assault into Punjab province when they opened fire on a gas station in Akwal village near the Talagang area of Chakwal district, setting fire to as many as 12 NATO tankers that were parked there at the time. The militants also fired on police vehicles that later rushed to the scene, killing four policemen. Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani has ordered an investigation into the incident.
Three policemen were killed on Sunday when a group of unknown militants opened fire on a security checkpoint in the Dera Murad Jumali area of Balochistan’s Nasirabad district. A spokesman for the Baloch Republican Army (BRA) later claimed responsibility for the attack.
A search operation in Quetta conducted by the Balochistan Constabulary and the Anti-Terrorist Force on Sunday resulted in the arrest of 42 suspects believed to have been involved in bombings, targeted killings, and other crimes. Police say various small arms were also seized during the raid.
Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (formerly NWFP)
Ten policemen were wounded in a suicide bomb attack that targeted a prison van travelling through the Timergara area of Lower Dir district on Saturday. The van was reportedly transporting three sons of Maulana Sufi Muhammad and four other prisoners on their way to appear before an anti-terrorism court when the bomber rammed the vehicle with his explosive-packed car. A spokesman for the Swat Taliban, Omar Hassan Ahrabi, later phoned The News to claim responsibility for the attack.
- Two policemen were killed in separate incidents in Karachi on Saturday. The body of a kidnapped head constable was discovered while another policeman was shot to death outside his home by unknown gunmen riding a motorcycle. In another incident on Saturday, an activist affiliated with the Mohajir Quami Movement-Haqiqi (MQM-H) was also gunned down in what authorities are calling a targeted killing.
US military assistance
- The United States and Pakistan have signed a contract for the transfer of a guided missile frigate worth nearly $65 million. An official from the Pakistani Navy said that the United States would hand over the ship at no cost and would also refurbish the vessel, supply it with ammunition, and provide training for the crew. The USS McInerney is scheduled to be transferred to the Pakistani Navy in Florida on August 31, at which point it will be commissioned as the PNS Alamgir.
- On Sunday, officials in Pakistan requested that India hand over Ajmal Kasab, the only surviving gunman of the 2008 Mumbai attack, so that they can proceed with the trial of seven suspects involved in the attack. Pakistan made the request after handing over six dossiers to India outlining Pakistan’s investigation into the Mumbai attacks.
- The Azm-e-Nau 3 war game moved into its second phase on Sunday and is due to last through May 13. The second phase will include around 20,000 officers and personnel and is set to take place in the areas of the working boundary at Sialkot.