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CHIMO Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-18-08 09:24 PM
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Quit operations, Taliban warlord warns Pakistan regional leaders
Source: The Guardian

Pakistan's Taliban militants have threatened to attack the provincial government in the troubled north-west unless it halts operations, escalating the country's security crisis.

Baitullah Mehsud, the warlord who leads the Taliban in Pakistan, gave the administration of the North-West Frontier Province five days to cease sporadic operations against Taliban groups and demonstrate its "sincerity" in peace negotiations. The showdown undermines Pakistan's policy of seeking peace deals with militants and comes as the Taliban in Afghanistan have stepped up a campaign against Nato and Afghan forces.

The North-West Frontier Province government, following elections in February, is led by the secular Awami National party, which has tried to promote peace talks with militant groups. However, in two parts of the province, Swat Valley and Hangu district, which is on the edge of the tribal belt, it has been forced to call on the army and paramilitary forces to combat insurgent groups that are allied to Mehsud's Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan.

"We will attack the provincial government and the ANP leaders after five days if they do not quit," said Maulvi Omar, spokesman for Mehsud, based in the tribal area of Waziristan. "The provincial government is ... not sincere in the talks."

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tidy_bowl Donating Member (249 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-18-08 10:07 PM
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1. Must've hit a nerve. nt
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ohio2007 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-19-08 10:47 AM
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2. they are 'capturing' the hearts and minds of the Pakistani government
Taliban take Pakistani officials hostage

The spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban, Maulvi Omar, said in a telephone interview Friday that the Taliban were waiting for the results of mediation talks before deciding what to do with the hostages. "If there's no result, we will start killing them," he said.

Rafiuddin, Mr. Omar said, was a "religious scholar" at the sprawling Kahi madrassa in Hangu. "He's not a fighter," he said. "That's why we want him back."

Mr. Omar also demanded the resignation of the new secular provincial government, which was elected in February, to replace a government dominated by religious parties sympathetic to the Taliban. If the government did not resign within five days, Mr. Omar said, the Taliban would take "organized action against the government."


On Friday, the Frontier Corps and the Taliban were fighting at Yakho Kaando on the border between Hangu and Orakzai, the intelligence official in Peshawar said.

It was expected, he said, that the Frontier Corps would push into Orakzai, where Hakimullah, a deputy commander to Mr. Mehsud who runs the Orakzai area for him, controls more than 30 madrassa schools involved in preparing jihadist fighters for Afghanistan, the official said.

One of those madrassa, he said, specialized in making "pressure cooker" bombs, a device that crams explosives into a pressure cooker and is used by the Taliban in southern Afghanistan as a particularly lethal weapon against coalition forces.
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