Taliban suicide assault team hits Pakistani military camp


The Taliban claimed credit for today's deadly suicide assault on a Pakistani military checkpoint in the northwestern district of Lakki Markat. The Taliban claimed the attack was carried out to avenge the deaths of commanders who were killed in recent US drone strikes in Pakistan's Taliban-controlled tribal areas.

The heavily-armed suicide assault team stormed a military checkpoint in the Serai Naurang area of Lakki Marwat district. Thirteen Pakistani military personnel, 11 civilians, and 12 Taliban fighters are reported to have been killed during the heavy fighting, according to Dawn. The civilians are said to have died after the suicide bomber ran into a home during the fighting and detonated his vest, killing 10 members of a family, including three children.

Taliban spokesman Ihsanullah Ihsan claimed the attack, but denied that 12 of his fighters were killed. Ihsan said the attack was executed to avenge the deaths of two senior Movement of the Taliban commanders, Faisal Khan and Toofani, who were killed in drone strikes in early January.

"We sent only four suicide bombers to attack this checkpost. We attacked it to avenge the killing of two of our friends in a recent drone strike," Ihsan told AFP.

"Pakistan has been co-operating with the US in its drone strikes that killed our two senior commanders, Faisal Khan and Toofani, and the attack on military camp was the revenge of their killing," Ihsan also said, according to Reuters.

Toofani, who was also known as Wali Mohammed, is said to have directed suicide operations for the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan. He was killed in a US drone strike in South Waziristan on Jan. 6.

Faisal Khan, who was said to be a senior commander in the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan, was killed in a US drone strike along with two Uzbek fighters in the Mir Ali area of North Waziristan on Jan. 3.

The US has carried out seven drone strikes in Pakistan so far this year. The last recorded strike took place on Jan. 10. In addition to Toofani and Khan, the US killed Mullah Nazir, the head of the Taliban in the Wazir areas of South Waziristan. Although Nazir's group is not part of the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan, it shelters the group as well as al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations.



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READER COMMENTS: "Taliban suicide assault team hits Pakistani military camp"

Posted by ayamo at February 2, 2013 5:56 PM ET:

Didn't Mehsud issue a ban on attacking the Pakistani Military? That seems to go over very well ...

Posted by mike merlo at February 3, 2013 1:25 AM ET:

Pakistan has gotta be "punch drunk" by now. This kind of stuff happens with such regularity at predictable locales one really has to wonder 'how much do they really care?'

Posted by naresh c. at February 3, 2013 12:31 PM ET:

The munafiq Pakistani army will be defeated soon by taliban. US says Pakistan has been double dealing with them. Taliban says, Pakistan has been double dealing with them. Guess what? They are both correct. This is what happens when Pakistanis dream of establishing a Khilafat with Pakistan as the center and the corrupt Pakistani army as it's hero. Oh and by early next year, Pakistan is also going to run out of money. But Pakistanis can take solace in blaming all their ills on 'Zionists' and Chanakya but not their pan-Islamist generals.

Posted by James at February 4, 2013 9:55 AM ET:

It must be one tough job being a Pakistani soldier. I feel sorry for them. My heart goes out to them.

Hopefully, the CIA is capitalizing on this golden opportunity for recruitment efforts.

Posted by blert at February 4, 2013 2:37 PM ET:

Just by the area under discussion one might think that the soldiers were members of the Frontier Corps -- the local auxiliaries.

IIRC, the Pakistani Army, proper, is never tasked with routine activities in the FATA.

The Frontier Corps is entirely composed of recruits from tribes within the FATA; overwhelmingly Pashtun.

The home with the civilians would appear to be the entire object of the assault. How else to explain the detonation of the belt bomb?

In which case, the operation was another 'Hatfield-McCoy' family feud 'hit.'

Such an attack would probably meet Mehsud's criteria: the Frontier Corps, per se, is not considered to be the Pakistani Army -- by the fanatics.

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At a deeper level, what we're witnessing is the slow boil civil war within Pakistani society. It's a fractious amalgam: the Pashtun tribes never wished to be ruled by Islamabad.

Ever since the Soviet invasion, decades ago, the Pakistani politicians have become addicted to the attention and rescue monies consequent to Afghan conflict.

In fact, Pakistan is now so utterly dependent upon war and grift that she can't make any headway in the modern world.

She's going broke slowly -- with the tempo building towards going broke very, very quickly.

That dynamic has already put Morsi and Assad on the skids.

All the world wonders: how are they going to get the money to carry on their bad work?

Posted by Maverick at February 4, 2013 10:27 PM ET:

Why are they angry? They always say they want to die fighting the americans, it's what they want. So there friends should be happy that they got what they wanted and celebrate there death as they have asked so many times for. Isn't it hypocritical that they are angry when we give them what they are asking for, and kill civilians in retaliation. Isn't that ungrateful of them to ask for something and then be angry after you give them what they wanted. If that isn't looking a gift horse in the mouth I don't know what is.