There are serious differences within the TTP between Hakimullah Mahsud the head of TTP and Wali Rehman Mahsud the head of Mahsud Taliban in South Waziristan agency over the issue that who will be the successor of Late Baitullah Mahsud the Head of TTP who was killed on 5thAugust 2009 in South Waziristan Agency. Baitullah Mahsud has nominated Wali Rehman Mahsud as his successor and the Mahsud Taliban in South Waziristan were also of the opinion that Wali Rehman would be the next Amir of TTP but after Baitullah Mahsud death Hakimullah Mahsud also become a contender for the leadership of the TTP.
Many Jirgas were held between the two TTP leaders to convince Hakimullah Mahsud to drop his demand of becoming the head of TTP even Afghan Taliban tried to negotiate between the two leaders. At last Hakimullah Mahsud and his cousin Qari Hussain the anti-Shia TTP leader and who is also the trainer of Suicide Bombers in South Waziristan threatened to quit TTP and form their own group in South Waziristan Agency.
This was not acceptable to Wali Rehman and other leaders of TTP that TTP should be divided so keeping in mind the interest of TTP Wali Rehman gave up his demand of becoming the head of TTP and thus Hakimullah was made the new head of TTP and Wali Rehman was made the head of Mahsud Taliban in South Waziristan agency. But the grudge remains in the heart of Wali Rehman that Hakimullah and Qari Hussain took the leadership of TTP from him which actually belonged to him.
Now TTP is virtually divided into two groups. One comprises Hakimullah Mahsud his cousin Qari Hussain and TTP spokesman Azam Tariq and the other group is composed of Wali Rehman, Shamim, Sajna, Sher Azam, Noor Sayed and Moulvi Ikramullah
The second issue was the personality clash between Qari Hussain and Shamim Mahsud. Qari Hussain from the start don’t like Shamim and consider Shamim a threat for his status and authority in South Waziristan Agency due to Shamim opening of suicide bombers training centers in Ladha tehsil of South Waziristan Agency which has angered Qari Hussain a lot. Qari Hussain wants that suicide bombers training should be solely under his control and no other commander should be allowed to run suicide bombers training centers. Shamim was also a very effective commander in Ladha against the Pakistani forces when the Pakistani army launched military operations in the agency in 2008 and in the ongoing military operation Rah Nijad which began on 16 October 2009 against the TTP Taliban this has made Shamim very popular in the ranks of Mahsud Taliban and this is not liked by Qari Hussain.
The third issue is the clash between Shamim and Sairaj the deputy head of Ladha in South Waziristan due to some personnel reasons like the distribution of 800000 Pakistani rupees given to Ladha Taliban by the Uzbeks of IMU and killing of few local Mahsud Taliban militants who were accused of being anti-TTP. For which Sairaj and Shamim accuse each other to be responsible to save themselves from blood feuds with the killed Taliban militants and which subsequently lead to the killing of four of Sairaj men by Shamim in Ladha in December 2009 whom he accused to be sent by Sairaj to kill him. Sairaj is supported by Hakimullah and Qari Hussain and Shamim is supported by Wali Rehman in this personnel feud between Shamim and Sairaj.
In the first week of July Sairaj Mahsud men killed commander Farhad alias Gaga who was very close to Wali Rehman and Shamim in Ladha. Sairaj denies his involvement in the killing of Farhad alias Gaga and Jirgas are being held between the two sides to solve the dispute and a new Jirga of TTP Taliban has been called in Miranshah North Waziristan agency on 27.7.2010 to find out who is involved in the killing of Commander Farhad Gaga.
The fourth reason is the failed assassination plan of Qari Hussain to kill Shamim by calling him for making reconciliation between him and Sairaj and then they would mix poison in Shamim food to kill him but this plan was heard by one of Wali Rehman loyalist and he at once informed Wali Rehman about Qari Hussain Plan. Wali Rehman was very angry over this and he and Qari Hussain exchanged very hot words over this issue. Sajna and Noor Sayed were also very angry over this plan of Qari Hussain to kill Shamim.
The fifth reason of differences between the two groups is about the killing of Moulvi Irfanullah cousin Hizabullah in Miranshah in North Waziristan by Qari Hussain who said that he has killed Hizbullah because he was sent by Shamim and Moulvi Irfanullah to kill him. Irfanullah denies these accusations of Qari Hussain and says that his cousin has been killed without any reason and he will avenge his cousin killing.
The sixth reason of differences between the above mentioned leaders is the kidnapping of col. Imam, Khalid Khwaja and a BBC correspondent by Qari Hussain in Mir Ali area through Punjabi Taliban by the name of Asian Tigers but actually belonged to Lashker Jhengvi the armed wing of Sipah Sahaba Pakistan a sectarian militant party with whom Qari Hussain and Hakimullah has very close ties and has remained members of this party when they were returning back to Bannu city after spending a couple of weeks with Wali Rehman who has invited the above mentioned three persons to North Waziristan. Khalid Khwaja was killed by the Fake Asian Tiger group after releasing his video in which he has admitted that he was an agent of the Pakistani ISI and American CIA and his dead body was found in North Waziristan two days later after the release of his video. This kidnapping of Wali Rehman guests by Qari Hussain through Punjabi Taliban has made Wali Rehman very angry and he consider it a great insult that his guests were kidnapped by Qari Hussain and he could do nothing for them.
Taliban leaders who do not want the disintegration of the TTP are trying to mediate between the two groups and even Afghan Taliban delegation tried to mediate between the two groups but so far they have not succeeded in their efforts.
In Kurrum Agency to there are differences between TTP Taliban in the agency. First clashes took place between Mullah Toofan Amir of Orakzai and Kurrum agencies and commander Rafique a local militant commander in Sada area of the agency in March 2010 in which more than twenty Taliban militants were killed from both sides. Rafique and his son along sixteen other militants of Rafique group were captured by Mullah Toofan group and shifted them to Orakzai agency where Rafique was shot dead and his son was beheaded by Mullah Toofan a few days after capturing them. The reason of differences between Mullah Toofan and Rafique were that Rafique was against the activities of Mullah Toofan of kidnapping local people for ransom and car snatching in the agency because it is giving a bad name to the organization and they are losing public support.
Mullah Toofan refused to listen to Rafique which led to armed clashes between the two groups in central Kurrum in March 2010 in which Rafique and his son lost their lives. Local Kurrum agency Taliban are angry over the killing of Rafique a local militant commander of TTP who was killed by a non local Orakzai resident Mullah Toofan.
The local people and local Taliban of Kurrum agency are now turning against the Taliban of other regions of FATA like Orakzai agency, South and North Waziristan agencies and Dara Adam Khel Afridi Taliban. The Sunni Population of Kurrum agency don’t like the dominance of non local Taliban from the above mentioned areas of FATA and now wants to get rid of them.
In the second week of June 2010 Clashes took place between Mullah Toofan men and Adnan Afridi in Nikkah Ziarat area of Central Kurrum and more than ten Taliban militants were killed in these clashes between Mullah Toofan men and Adnan Afridi OF Dara Adam Khel. The reason of the clashes is said to be that Adnan Afridi wanted to have total control in Nikkah Ziarat area of central Kurrum in Kurrum agency which Mullah Toofan was not allowing and as the Amir of Kurrum agency he wants to control all the Sunni inhabited areas of the agency and that’s why clashes took place between the two important TTP commanders in Kurrum Agency.