Pakistan Security Brief
EU counterterrorism officials worry recent warnings were based on faulty intel; Five soldiers wounded in rare roadside attack in North Waziristan; Secretary Clinton calls Pakistani President Zardari as WikiLeaks revelations “tarnish” Pakistan’s top military and civilian leaders; US Treasury Department freezes assets of known Pakistani terrorists; Security officials fear new wave of TTP suicide attacks.
EU Terror Plot
According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, some German intelligence officials believe that a recent terror warning issued by German counterterrorism officials was based on faulty intelligence. According to the report, some officials are beginning to question the bona fides of the Pakistani informant who allegedly detailed an al Qaeda plot to carryout attacks inside Germany at the end of last month. They say it is possible that al Qaeda may be mounting a coordinated disinformation campaign to spread fear, distract counterterrorism officials, and divert attention away from actual plots. In the words of one German official, the recent terror warning has allowed al Qaeda to “gain public attention without even staging an attack.”
Five Pakistani soldiers were wounded when militants attacked their military convoy on Thursday in North Waziristan. According to reports, a remotely denoted bomb went off as their military convoy made its way from Mirali to Thall garrison in the Spinwam sub-district of the tribal agency. Security forces have imposed a curfew along the road as they work to establish which militant group was responsible for yesterday’s attack. For more information about militant activity in North Waziristan, please click HERE.
U.S. Secretary of State Clinton phoned Pakistani President Asif Zardari on Thursday to discuss fallout caused by information leaked in diplomatic cables published by WikiLeaks. During the conversation, Secretary Clinton assured the Pakistani President that the WikiLeaks revelations would not impact Pakistan’s partnership with the US, and that the United States remains committed to a long-term strategic relationship with Pakistan. Yesterday’s phone call was the first high-level contact between the two countries since WikiLeaks released hundreds of thousands of intimate diplomatic cables last weekend. 
According to a report by McClatchy, the reputation of Pakistan’s military and political leadership has been seriously “tarnished” by information disclosed in the hundreds of thousands of diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks. In the article, US and Pakistani analysts and observers note that the diplomatic cables paint top Pakistani leadership officials as “pro-American and duplicitous,” with top civilian and military leaders privately supporting controversial US policies while publically disavowing them. The reaction to the cables has been very negative among Pakistanis who not only fault their leaders, but also the United States for meddling in Pakistani affairs. Some observers fear that the WikiLeaks revelations will only serve to further anti-American sentiment in the region. Asked to gauge the reaction to the WikiLeaks documents among Pakistanis, Khurshid Ahmad, the vice President of the Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) political party, told McClatchy, that “Disenchantment, [and] anti-Americanism, will increase among the people.”
The United States Treasury Department on Thursday identified three Pakistanis with known links to terrorist organizations and banned Americans from conducting business with the individuals. According to the U.S. Treasury Department, two of the men are associated with Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), while the third was identified as a member of Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM). The assets of the men were frozen, and a spokesman at the Treasury Department told reports that all three were, “actively involved in leading or planning operations on behalf of these dangerous terrorist organizations.” 
A new report released by Pakistani intelligence agencies warn that the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan is preparing a series of suicide attacks across the Punjab during the Shia holy month of Muharram. According to officials, the TTP may be planning to attack “the Iranian Embassy, its consulate, and those offices of multinational companies, NGOs and schools where foreigners are working.” Additionally, the TTP has warned the provincial government that militants will attack government offices, unless all non-Muslim employees are removed from official positions. It has also been reported that the TTP may be planning to attack Hafiz Saeed, the chief of the Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD), a religious charity organization believed to be a front for Lashkar-e-Tiaba (LeT).
Pakistani police announced on Friday the arrest of five militants linked to a 2009 attack at a Pakistani military intelligence agency in Lahore. Police Chief Aslam Tareen said the men confessed to their role in the 2009 attack and admitted that prior to their arrest, they were planning a new round of terror attacks against Shia targets in Lahore during next week’s Muharram processions. It is believed that all five of the suspects are linked to the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan.
Three militants planning terror attacks were arrested on Friday by security forces in Dera Ismail Khan. Security forces told reporters that the men were preparing to carry out operations during the month of Muharram and that at the time of their capture the men were in possession of a suicide jacket and numerous weapons. 
Sindh government officials unveiled plans on Thursday to increase the size of Karachi’s police force by recruiting over 10,000 new officers. According to the Chief of the Sindh government, the decision to hire new officers was based on the fact that, “Karachi’s population has risen to 20 million and the challenges of maintaining law and order have gone up in proportion.” This year, Karachi has seen the highest murder rate in over a decade and there are new fears, following last month’s deadly suicide bombing at CID headquarters, that the city is being used as base of operation for numerous militant organizations.
One solider was killed and another five were wounded after militants attacked their convoy on Friday in southwestern Balochistan province. The attack occurred in the town of Khuzdar. Following the attack, soldiers killed three militants in retaliatory fire.