Pakistan Security Brief
Pakistan Security Brief – July 9, 2010
Suicide bomber kills at least 56 in Mohmand Agency; 12 militants killed in Orakzai Agency; European terror suspects linked to Pakistan; ISI chief says adjustment needed in national security policy; China and Pakistan to establish joint economic forum; relatives say suspected militants killed in custody; two people killed by gunmen in Karachi.
A suicide bomber killed at least 56 people and wounded 100 others on Friday in Mohmand Agency. “There were two blasts. The first one was small but the second was a big one...,” a local political official told Reuters. The attack targeted a group of tribal elders gathered near a civilian government headquarters in Yakaghund, the administrative capital of Mohmand. The blast left a crater nearly five feet deep and trapped victims in the rubble of numerous destroyed shops. According to a senior Pakistani security official, the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) have claimed responsibility for the attack.
At least twelve militants were killed when security forces attacked militant positions in Orakzai Agency on Friday. According to sources, security forces launched the morning attack with support from fighter jets and helicopter gunships, destroying at least six hideouts. Wasi-ur-Rehman, a key Taliban commander, is also believed to have been killed.
Terror Suspects Linked to Pakistan
Three suspected terrorists arrested in Norway and Germany on Thursday are believed to be involved in the network that plotted to attack the New York Subway and bomb a shopping center Manchester, England, American and European officials said. The three suspects are also believed to have links to al-Qaeda operatives in Pakistan’s tribal areas. According to sources, the plotters all had links to Saleh al-Somali, an al-Qaeda leader killed by a U.S. drone strike in Pakistan last year.
Pakistan’s National Security Policy
Director General of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Lt-Gen. Shuja Pasha, on Thursday said he supports a recommendation made by the Parliamentary Committee on National Security to “review” its national counter-terrorism to account for external forces creating instability in the country. In an hour-long presentation to the committee, Lt-Gen. Pasha said, “As the American policy in Afghanistan is changing…we are doing the same here. And we will do what suits us.” According to sources, Gen. Pasha said that “foreign forces” were creating instability in various parts of the country, adding that the ISI was closely monitoring their activities.
Pakistan and China announced that they will establish a joint economic forum to increase economic cooperation between the two countries. This announcement on Thursday followed a meeting between President Asif Ali Zardari and Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao in Beijing. According to sources, the forum will address issues such as the opening of Chinese bank branches in Pakistan, currency exchange, highway construction, and energy projects.
The relatives of 23 suspected militants killed in Dir on Tuesday said they died while in custody after being turned over to security forces by local village councils. "Most of them were school boys. Some got inspired by the Taliban and joined their training camps in Swat but were weaned away by their parents before they could get into real fighting," a local elder and former parliamentarian told the BBC. The military alleges that the suspects were killed in clashes during a search operation conducted after four suicide bombers attacked a military base in Timergara. The Pakistani military has been accused on multiple occasions of conducting extra-judicial killings in Pakistan’s northwest. 
Two people were killed and three others were wounded by gunmen in separates incidents in Karachi on Friday. According to police sources, unidentified gunmen killed one man near Dhobi Ghaat and another near Mewa Shah Graveyard. Three more men were critically injured.