Pakistan Security Brief

U.S. representatives express concerns over LeT in U.S.; Al Qaeda leader Zawahiri attempts to reassert control over regional affiliates; Pakistan unveils new, more austere budet, raises defense spending; Conflict information on whether Pakistan will continue Iran pipeline project; Gen. Dempsey says U.S. relations with Pakistan improving; Secretary of State to visit South Asia soon; Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa swears-in news ministers; Army chief calls on prime minister; MQM calls strike in Karachi; Imran Khan fit to be sworn in; Pervez Musharraf formally arrested in Bugti murder case; Lt. Col. killed in Khyber operation; Army declares part of Kurram clear of militants; Violence across Balochista, Karachi; Israel denies exporting military equipment to Pakistan.

U.S.-Pakistan Relations

  • U.S. Representatives of the House Committee on Homeland Security on June 12 voiced concerns during a hearing on the activity of Pakistani militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) in the U.S. Representative Peter King (R-NY) described LeT as “operationally active” in the U.S., and Representative Brian Higgins (D-NY) suggested that the LeT threat be “examined and evaluated”.1

  • Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey said on Wednesday in front of the U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations that Pakistan and the U.S. are gradually rebuilding their relationship under Pakistan's new leadership.2

  • For the first time since taking office, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will travel to Pakistan and India at the end of June, Pakistani officials announced on Thursday. Drone strikes and the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan will reportedly be issues on the table.3

Domestic Politics

  • On Thursday, twelve ministers of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, all male, were sworn in in Peshawar at the Governor's House. The allocation of ministries was only finalized on Wednesday, after disagreements over the distribution of ministries between the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) parties, as well as a potential merger of the Social Welfare and Women's Development Ministry with the Zakat and Ushr Ministry that brought criticism from women's rights groups.4

  • Chief Election Commissioner Fakhruddin G. Ebrahim and Chief of Army Staff Ashraf Pervez Kayani separately called on Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday.5

  • On Thursday, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) leaders called for a strike on Friday to protest the killing of an MQM activist in Karachi. Many businesses and private schools in Karachi plan to observe the strike.6

  • Doctors on Thursday gave Imran Khan the go-ahead to travel to Islamabad to take his oath as a member of the National Assembly.7

  • Former president General Pervez Musharraf was formally arrested on Thursday in the Akbar Bugti murder case by Balochistan police forces. He will remain at his farmhouse during a two-week judicial remand.8


  • On Wednesday, Pakistan's new government unveiled its first budget, for $35.5 billion. To help with Pakistan's energy crisis, the budget includes funds for buying two nuclear power plants from China, but not for the proposed Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline. The lack of funding is reportedly seen as a strategic move, as the U.S. is firmly against the plan and has threatened sanctions if Pakistan goes through with it. Pakistan, for its part, is reluctant to drop the plan entirely due to penalties it would need to pay Iran for non-compliance with the deal. A senior Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that Pakistan would try to stall the program on price renegotiation issues. However, a conflicting report by the Express Tribune states that the pipeline project will continue, but with at lower cost than before. Also aiming to improve the energy situation, the new budget allocates funding to schemes switching gas- or oil-based plants to coal, and building two new coal-fired plants. Additionally, defense spending will be raised, by 10 percent according to some sources and 15 percent according to others. Dawn reports that opposition leaders are criticizing the budget by characterizing it as more “business friendly than people friendly.” he budget's new sales taxes and cuts to corporate taxes, were criticized by Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah in a report to the media after the budget unveiling. The new sales and income taxes will altogether raise $2.02 billion in revenue. On Thursday, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar explained various points of the budget to the media, saying that people should support his new taxes on the rich. Another source of expected revenue is the U.S. Coalition Support Fund (CSF), from which Pakistan expects reimbursements of $1.12 billion. On the whole, the budget is reportedly more austere than last year's, with only a 0.6 percent rise in overall spending and a lowered budget deficit totaling 6.3 percent of GDP.9

  • Budget documents released to parliament show a Rs600 million payment to the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) for a “special assignment” for the prime minister.10

  • On Wednesday, the Bureau of Statistics reported that in the first 11 months of fiscal year (FY) 2012/13 Pakistan's trade deficit fell by 3.89 percent, falling to $18.7 billion from $19.4 billion the year before.11

  • The Benazir Income Support Program (BISP), a keystone initiative of the previous government, has been renamed the Income Support Program and has been given an 87.5 percent boost in funding in the new budget, according to Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Wednesday.12


  • On May 23, al Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri reportedly sent a memo to two regional affiliates reiterating his control over the global jihadist movement. The memo, published by al Jazeera on Monday, appears to show Zawahiri's attempt to re-establish control over al Qaeda's Iraqi and Syrian franchises and to reassert the centrality of the al Qaeda leadership based in Pakistan.13

  • An improvised explosive device in the Tirah Valley, Khyber agency, on Wednesday killed a lieutenant colonel of the Pakistan Army, who was leading an operation to clear the area.14

  • On Wednesday, civil and military forces announced that the Parachamkani area of central Kurram agency had been cleared of militants, and that Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from the area would soon be able to return to their homes.15

  • Five people went missing in Balochistan's Loralai district on Wednesday, including three doctors. Levies forces and police officers are reportedly working towards recovery of the five.16

  • Two people were killed on Peshawar's Dora Road on Wednesday in a firing incident, including a policeman and his attacker. An armed tribesman was reportedly shot by another police officer.17

  • One person was killed in Karachi's Baldia town on Wednesday when explosives he was transporting detonated. Witnesses claim that the man was a militant who had opened fire and was about to throw a grenade when it exploded in his hand.18


  • On Tuesday, Israel and the Pakistan Army's Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) both denied British reports that Israel had sold military equipment to Pakistan.19

Karachi NGOs

  • A report on Asia's largest slum, Orangi Town in Karachi, in the Wall Street Journal focuses on local non-profit The Orangi Pilot Project (OPP) and its work in Orangi Town. Despite the murder of OPP leader Parveen Rehman in March, the group has continued to lobby for the rights of Orangi's residents and improve living conditions in the area, including helping to finance a new school.20

1“U.S. Lawmakers Urge Vigilance Against Pakistan's Lashkar-e Taiba,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, June 12, 2013. Available at
2“Pakistan-US ties on the mend: Dempsey,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
3“Kerry to visit Pakistan, India this month,” Dawn, June 13, 2013. Available at
“US Secretary of State John Kerry to visit Pakistan this month,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
4Zahir Shah Sherazi, “No female minister in KP as cabinet takes oath,” Dawn, June 13, 2013. Available at
“12-member Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa cabinet sworn in,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
Zahir Shah Sherazi, “No Women Ministry in KP under PTI govt,” Dawn, June 11, 2013. Available at
5“CEC, COAS call on PM Sharif,” Dawn, June 13, 2013. Available at
6Asif Mehmood, “MQM calls for country-wide strike over activist's murder,” Dawn, May 13, 2013. Available at
7“Doctors clear Imran Khan to travel to Islamabad,” Dawn, June 13, 2013. Available at
8“Musharraf formally arrested in Bugti murder case,” Dawn, June 13, 2013. Available at
9Tom Hussain, “No money in Pakistan budget for Iranian gas pipeline U.S. opposed,” The Kansas City Star, June 13, 2013. Available at
Zafar Bhutta, “Annual plan 2013-14: Govt will not scrap Iran gas pipeline project,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
Zafar Bhutta, “Focus shifts to coal-fired plants to arrest rising power cost,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
“Pakistan raises annual defence budget by 10 percent,” AFP, June 12, 2013. Available at
Kamran Yousaf, “Defence budged hiked by 15 per cent,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
Afshan Subohi, “Budget 2013-14: More 'business friendly' than people friendly,” Dawn, June 13, 2013. Available at
“Shah criticises 'not a people friendly budget',” Dawn, June 12, 2013. Available at
Shahbaz Rana, “New tax measures to boost revenues by Rs202.6 billion,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
Ferya Ilyas, “If I'm taxing the rich, people should support me: Ishaq Dar,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
Mehtab Haider, “Rs112 billion expected from US war fund,” The News, June 13, 2013. Available at
Irfan Ghauri and Shahbaz Rana, “In 'austere' budget, deficit projected at Rs1.6 trillion,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
10Usman Manzoor, “ISI got Rs600 million for PM's special mission,” The News, June 13, 2013. Available at
11“Pakistan trade gap eases 3.89 pct in first 11 months of FY12/13,” Reuters, June 12, 2013. Available at
12Imran Ali Teepu, “BISP renamed; allocation raised by 87pc,” Dawn, June 12, 2013. Available at
13Peter Bergen, “Al Qaeda's boss asserts himself,” CNN, June 11, 2013. Available at
14Ibrahim Shinwari, “Army officer killed in Tirah valley blast,” Dawn, June 13, 2013. Available at
15“Parachamkani cleared of militants,” The News, June 13, 2013. Available at
16Syed Ali Shah, “Three doctors kidnapped in Balochistan,” Dawn, June 13, 2013. Available at
17“Cop, attacker killed in Peshawar firing,” Dawn, June 12, 2013. Available at
“Cop, armed tribesman killed in shootout,” The News, June 13, 2013. Available at,-armed-tribesman-killed-in-shootout
18“One killed in blast in Baldia Town,” The Express Tribune, June 13, 2013. Available at
Salis bin Perwaiz, “Man dies in Karachi as grenade explodes in his hand,” The News, June 13, 2013. Available at
19“Israel denies exporting military equipment to Pakistan,” The Express Tribune, June 12, 2013. Available at
20Umar Farooq, “In Asia's Largest Slum, Development, Danger,” The Wall Street Journal, June 13, 2013. Available at


Arrow down red
Jul '13
Jun '13
May '13