New Developments in offing in South and North Waziristan
(South Waziristan Agency) According to some unconfirmed reports it is revealed that Pakistan army is said to be holding secret peace talks with the leadership of Tehreik e Taliban Pakistan in South Waziristan to end up the fighting going on in the Agency since October 2009. It is said that Pakistani army wants the situation to be calmed in South Waziristan Agency so that it could spare troops to launch a military operation in North Waziristan Agency due to the excessive American pressure. This development is very critical considering that Pakistan Army cannot fight in South and North Waziristan at the same time. In return of these peace demands TTP has demanded the release of all of their jailed comrades in Pakistani Jails all over the country. Secondly, TTP wants that the Pakistani army should be confined to the camps established during the time of British rule in Waziristan. This ultimately means that Army will not build any new cantonment areas in South Waziristan. TTP also demanded that if the army and Pakistan government want peace in South Waziristan Agency the Pakistani army should hand over the control of Makin Tehsil to them. The above mentioned conditions seem very difficult to be accepted by the Pakistani government because it would again give a chance to the TTP to re-organize and re-establish their rule in South Waziristan Agency.
Majority of the TTP leadership is present in North Waziristan Agency these days. Hakimullah Mahsud, head of TTP, is the most high profile leader of TTP in North Waziristan. Moreover, Wali Rehman Mahsud, the head of Mahsud Taliban of TTP in North Waziristan Agency is also seen off and on in the area. With addition to it, Latif, a cousin of Hakimullah Mahsud and an important and influential TTP commander is also making his presence felt in the area. Another TTP fighter, Toofani, who is the first cousin of Qari Hussain, the father of suicide bombers, and having close resemblance with him, is heading the camp of suicide bombers in North Waziristan. At last, Ashiq Mahsud, acting as the deputy all these people is based in North Waziristan Agency in the areas of Miranshah and Mir Ali Tehsil in the Agency.
In an another development, Ilyas Kashmiri, the head of 313 Brigade was killed along with eight other Punjabi Taliban in an American drone attack on 3.6.2011 in Wana area of South Waziristan Agency. The spokesman of 313 brigade, Abu Hanzala Kashar, has also admitted that Ilyas Kashmiri has been killed in an American drone attack. This lesser known organization has distributed pamphlets in Wana confirming the death of their commander in-chief Ilyas Kashmiri in an American Drone attack and threatening the Americans of dire consequences for killing him. Mullah Nazir Taliban also confirmed the death of Ilyas Kashmiri in the drone attack of 3 June.
This swift confirmation on the part of 313 brigade and Pakistani intelligence agencies has put many people in doubt. If we consider two case studies of Baituallah Mehsud and Qari Hussain death, this confirmation looks more curious. The death of TTP leader Baitullah Mahsud was not confirmed even after one month. Moreover, till date Qari Hussain death has not been affirmed yet by the TTP although many believe that he has died. In this whole scenario the confirmation of death of Ilyas Kashmiri within three hours looks dubious.
There are also reports that militants from North Waziristan are now shifting to Wana and other areas of South Waziristan Agency due to the expected military operation in North Waziristan Agency. There is a general perception among the common people that now Wana and other areas of South Waziristan would be the main target of American drones if army launched a military operation in North Waziristan Agency.
On 6 June American drone targeted a house, a religious Madrassa and a pickup truck in the area of Wana. Two missiles were fired at the house in which seven Punjabi Taliban militants were killed. The names of the killed militants are as fallow:
4. Qari Amjad
The name of the seventh militant could not be known. In the second attack one missile was fired at a religious madrassa in which five Arabs were killed. The name of the one of the killed Arab is said to Yousaf al Iraqi. In the third attack drone targeted a pickup truck in Dray Nashter area. Five militants belonging to TTP were killed in this attack.
North Waziristan Agency
According to the Taliban of North Waziristan Agency if the government launched a military operation in North Waziristan due to the American pressure it will have to suffer a lot. North Waziristan Taliban has conveyed this message to FRC sources that any offensive against Taliban militants in North Waziristan Agency by the Pakistani Army will be a violation of the peace agreement of 2008 made between the Pakistani army and local Taliban militants. They say that Taliban militants would start attacks on the security forces and government installations in the Agency. They also threatened that North Waziristan Taliban would start kidnapping personals of security forces and civilian government officials in the agency and from the settled Districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and would use them as bargaining chips for the release of their jailed comrades. Moreover, these kidnapped people will be used to get huge ransom from the Pakistani government to run their Jihadi activities. North Waziristan Taliban says that if the Pakistani government launched a military operation in the Agency then all the Jihadi organizations, local or foreign, would unite and fight against the Pakistani government and Army. They says that Hafiz Gull Bahadur group, Haqani group, IMU, IJG Uzbek groups, Punjabi Taliban and TTP they would all fight against the Pakistani army together. NWA Taliban boasts that there are more than twelve thousand well armed and battle hardened Taliban fighters in North Waziristan Agency and they would give a real tough time to the Pakistani army and would defeat the army again like in 2006 and 2008.
Gull Bahadur group and his allies have circulated pamphlets in Miranshah and Mir Ali areas of the Agency appealing the local people that they must accompany us to fight against USA and NATO forces. But if they cannot do this then they should at least guard their homes and villages at night because we fear that the American and NATO forces may cross the border to kill and capture Taliban leaders in North Waziristan Agency and to destroy our bases and hideouts in the Agency.