Pakistan Security Brief

AQIS spokesman offers condolences for killing of al Shabaab leader; AQIS spokesman condemns “infidel system;” AQIS announces new Tor browser project; Military airstrikes kill ten militants in Khyber; 20 militants killed in clashes with security forces in Khyber; IED kills four in Khyber; 30 militants surrender in Bara, Khyber; Rockets fired on Ashura procession in Orakzai; IED injures two in Tubat, Balochistan; Militant, policeman killed in clashes in Peshawar district; Lashkar-e-Islam chief continues FM radio sermons in Khyber; U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan summoned over Defense Department Report; Haqqani Network fractured, says senior U.S. commander ; Prime Minister Sharif to visit China; UN Ambassador urges international support in repatriation of Afghan refugees; Army Chief meets Afghan President, other officials in Kabul; Pakistan will not accept conditional dialogue with India, says Foreign Office spokesperson; Indian army replaces company responsible for deaths in Indian-administered Kashmir; Indian officials claim links between Indian Mujahideen, al Qaeda; PTI chief proposes commission of Supreme Court judges to probe election rigging.

Al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent

  • On November 3, al Qaeda in the Indian Sub-continent (AQIS) spokesman Usama Mahmood posted a statement in Arabic and Urdu on his Twitter account, offering condolences for the death of Ahmed Abdi Godane, the late leader of al Qaeda’s Somali affiliate, al Shabaab. Godane was killed in a U.S. drone strike nearly two months ago.  The statement reminds Somali fighters that the U.S. is the common enemy that needs to be fought. Mahmood also conveyed greetings from the group’s leader Asim Umar to the new head of the Somalia movement, Ahmad Umar alias Abu Ubaidah.[1]

  • On November 3, Usama Mahmood posted a series of tweets in Arabic and Urdu condemning the “infidel system” and giving reasons for why Muslims should hate the “infidel system.” The tweets did not elaborate on what the “infidel system” meant. Mahmood also offered prayers for Muslims in Iraq, Syria, Chechnya, Dagestan and Yemen and declared that jihad would continue until the establishment of the Caliphate.[2]

  • On November 3 and 4, the English-language Bangladeshi Twitter account of AQIS announced that it was working on a new version of Tor for jihadists. Tor is a web browser that enables anonymous internet use. The account further asked its followers for their choice of country names, to which their IP addresses would be attributed.[3]


  • According to a November 6 Frontier News report, Lashkar-e-Islam chief Mangal Bagh continues to broadcast sermons through the group’s radio channel despite widespread operations by the Pakistan military against militants in Khyber Agency. Bagh reportedly issues daily speeches urging people to fight against security forces and issues threats to opponents through his FM radio channel.[4]

  • On November 5, Pakistan Air Force fighter jets killed ten militants in two airstrikes in the Tirah Valley of Khyber Agency. In the first strike, five militants were killed and four militant hideouts destroyed. The second airstrike, conducted in the Aka Khel area of the Tirah Valley, killed five militants and destroyed five militant hideouts. According to security sources, those killed belonged to the militant group Lashkar-e-Islam.[5] 

  • On November 5, security forces repulsed a militant attack and killed 20 militants in Paindi Cheena in Landi Kotal sub-district of the Tirah Valley, Khyber Agency. One Tauheedul Islam member was killed and two others injured in the attack. The security forces also fired mortar and artillery shells from Jarobi camp, targeting militant hideouts in the Aka Khel area of the Tirah Valley in Bara sub-district.[6]

  • On November 4, two consecutive bomb blasts killed two Frontier Corps (FC) personnel and two members of the anti-Taliban militant group, Tauheedul Islam in the Paindi Cheena area of Zakha Khel in Landi Kotal sub-district of Khyber Agency.[7]

  • On November 5, 30 militants including commanders affiliated with Lashkar-e-Islam (LI), reportedly surrendered to authorities in Bara sub-district of Khyber Agency. Commander Kandahar, chief of his own militant group of the Zakhakhel tribe, was among those who surrendered.[8]

  • According to a report in The News on November 6, militants fired rockets at an Ashura procession, killing two mourners and injuring 28, in the Merazai area in lower Orakzai Agency.[9]  

  • On November 6, an improvised explosive device (IED) detonated near a police mobile, injuring two security personnel in the city of Turbat in Balochistan.[10]

  • On November 6, police gunned down a suspected militant in response to a grenade attack on a police check-post on Afridi road in the Badhber area of Peshawar district. One policeman was also killed in the clashes.[11]

U.S.-Pakistan Relations

  • On November 5, the Foreign Office summoned U.S. Ambassador Richard Olson to protest against “unwarranted comments” against Pakistan contained in a U.S. Department of Defense report to Congress titled “Progress Toward Security and Stability in Afghanistan.” Foreign Office spokesperson Tasneem Aslam declared that the report makes “unsubstantiated allegations” about the existence of militant sanctuaries in Pakistan and the use of proxy forces by Pakistan against Afghanistan and India.[12] 

  • In a video briefing on November 6, a senior commander for U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, Lt. Gen. Joseph Anderson, declared that the Haqqani Network was now fractured like the Quetta Shura Taliban as a result of the ongoing Pakistani military offensive, Operation Zarb-e-Azb, in North Waziristan. He also declared that the operation had disrupted the Haqqani Network’s ability to conduct attacks in Kabul.[13] 

Pak-Afghan Relations

  • On November 5, Ambassador Masood Khan called upon the UNHCR and the international community to assist the Afghan government in taking “serious steps” toward the repatriation of Afghan refugees and for creating a conducive environment for their return. Khan also outlined Pakistan’s stretched resources in terms of relief efforts and encouraged international support to resolve the refugee situation.[14]

  • On November 6, Army chief Gen. Raheel Sharif met Afghan President Ashraf Ghani during his one-day visit to Afghanistan. Military spokesman Gen. Asim Bajwa declared that the meeting ended in good will and positivity. Gen. Sharif also met the Afghan Defense Minister and the Chief of General Staff. According to Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Gen. Sharif sought closer security ties with Afghanistan, including intelligence sharing and the provision of training and equipment to Afghan forces, in order to combat terrorism.[15]  

Indo-Pakistan Relations

  • Pakistan’s Foreign Office spokesperson Tasneem Aslam declared on November 6 that Pakistan would not accept India’s stated conditions for the resumption of a composite bilateral dialogue. Aslam was responding to Indian Defense Minister’s statement on November 5 about certain “red lines” being pre-requisites for dialogue with Pakistan. Aslam asserted that dialogue with India is not a favor but a necessity for peace and development in South Asia. Aslam also declared that the leaders of the Kashmiri All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) are not separatists, as claimed by India, but freedom fighters in an occupied territory.[16]

  • According to a Dawn report on November 6, the Indian army has replaced the Indian army company in Budgam, Indian-administered Kashmir that was responsible for a November 3 firing incident which killed two civilians and sparked a series of protests.[17]

India Terror Threat

  • According to a Reuters report on November 6, Indian intelligence officials have decrypted communications between home-grown militant group Indian Mujahideen (IM) and al Qaeda, suggesting that the groups are working together to conduct major attacks in the region. According to Indian officials, plots uncovered include the kidnapping of foreigners and turning India into “Syria and Iraq where violence is continuously happening.”[18]

Sino-Pak Relations

  • On November 6, Radio Pakistan reported that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will leave for an official visit to Beijing, China on November 7. According to Foreign Office spokesperson Tasneem Aslam, the countries will sign several agreements during the Prime Minister’s visit, with most agreements relating to the field of energy. Aslam also declared that Prime Minister Sharif is scheduled to hold bilateral meetings with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang during his visit.[19] 

Political Crisis

  • On November 5, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan, addressing journalists after a meeting with Jamaat-e-Islami chief Sirajul Haq, proposed the establishment of a commission comprising of Supreme Court judges to probe into 2013 general elections’ rigging allegations. Haq reportedly supported the proposal and urged Khan to engage in dialogue with the government.[20]

[1]“AQIS Gives Eulogy for Former Shabaab Leader, Reminds that U.S. Must be Fought,” SITE, November 5, 2014. Available at
[2]“AQIS spokesman Condemns “Infidel System,” Prays for Fighters in Chechnya, Dagestan, and Yemen,” SITE. November 4, 2014. Available at
[3] “AQIS Account Announces Development of AQ Web Browser,” SITE, November 4, 2014. Available at
[4]“Lashkar-i-Islam continues to broadcast ‘Khyber Mullah’ sermons despite operation,” November 6, 2014. Available at
[5]“Air raids kill 10 terrorists in Tirah Valley,” The News, November 5, 2014. Available at
[6]“At least 20 suspected militants killed in Tirah,” Dawn, November 5, 2014. Available at
[7]“Two FC men, TI volunteers killed in Landikotal blasts,” November 6, 2014. Available at,-TI-volunteers-killed-in-Landikotal-blasts
[8]“30 militants surrender in Bara,” The News, November 6, 2014. Available at
[9]“Two killed, 28 injured in Orakzai rocket attacks,” The News, November 6, 2014. Available at,-28-injured-in-Orakzai-rocket-attacks
[10]“Two cops injured in Turbat blast,” Geo News, November 6, 2014. Available at
[11]“Suspected militant gunned down in Badhber,” Dawn, November 6, 2014. Available at
[12]“Pakistan summons US ambassador over ‘unsubstantiated’ Pentagon report,” Dawn, November 5, 2014. Available at
[13]“US commander commends Zarb-e-Azb for disrupting Haqqani network’s ability to target Afghanistan,” Express Tribune, November 6, 2014. Available at
[14]“Pakistan urges for ‘serious steps’ for return of Afghan refugees,” Dawn, November 6, 2014. Available at
[15]“Army chief seeks closer security ties with Afghanistan,” Express Tribune, November 6, 2014. Available at
[16]“Pakistan rejects conditions on dialogue with India: FO,” Express Tribune, November 6, 2014. Available at
[17]“Indian army replaces company involved in Kashmir killings,” Dawn, November 6, 2014. Available at
[18]“Officials fear al Qaeda grooming Indian militants for big attacks,” Reuters, November 6, 2014. Available at
[19]“Official visit: PM Nawaz to leave for China tomorrow,” Express Tribune, November 6, 2014. Available at
[20]“Reaching out: Imran Khan proposes way out,” Express Tribune, November 6, 2014. Available at
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