Pakistani Taliban threaten former President Musharraf with 'death squad'


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Adnan Rasheed (unmasked) is pictured with members of his "death squad." Image from the SITE Intelligence Group.

A Pakistani jihadist who escaped from prison during a Taliban jailbreak last spring appeared in a video in which he threatened to assassinate Pervez Musharraf, the former President of Pakistan who has recently returned from self-imposed exile. The jihadist, Adnan Rasheed, said he formed an assassination team and plans to attack Musharraf.

Rasheed appears on a video with Ihsanullah Ihsan, the spokesman for the Movement of the Taliban Pakistan, who is wanted by the Pakistan government. The video was produced by Umar Studio, the media arm of the Movement of the Taliban Pakistan, and obtained from a Facebook page by the SITE Intelligence Group.

In the video, Rasheed, who speaks in both English and Urdu, is shown training a group of fighters who have supposedly been assigned to assassinate Musharraf.

Rasheed says the "death squad" is split up in groups of "fedayeen, sniper team, special assault team, and close combat team." The term 'fedayeen' is often used to describe suicide bombers.

"Musharraf, you can see this death squad around me. We warn you to surrender yourself to us, otherwise we will hit you from where you will never reckon," Rashid says in English while surrounded by his team.

Rasheed issues the threat to Musharraf as he is surrounded by his "death squad." Fifteen men wearing masks and military uniforms are seen armed with RPGs, sniper rifles, and assault rifles.

Musharraf returned to Pakistan yesterday and said he is seeking to return to politics. He left Pakistan in April 2009 after resigning the presidency in August 2008. Pakistan's Supreme Court was planning impeachment hearings just before Musharraf resigned. Upon his return, Musharraf was photographed with a protective vest that is visible underneath his clothing.

Rasheed is a longtime jihadist associated with al Qaeda

Rasheed has a history with Musharraf. He is a Pakistani terrorist who was involved in the Dec. 14, 2003 assassination attempt against then-President Pervez Musharraf. A member of the Pakistani Air Force, Rasheed was sentenced to death for his role in the assassination attempt. While in prison, Rasheed owned several cell phones and frequently communicated with journalists. He also got married while in prison and fathered a child.

Rasheed worked for Amjad Farooqi, the Pakistani terrorist who engineered the two assassination attempts against Musharraf in December 2003 at the behest of al Qaeda leader Abu Faraj al Libi; Farooqi is suspected of involvement in other terror attacks as well. Farooqi was a member of the Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan; the Harkat-ul-Ansar and its successor, the Harakat-ul-Mujahideen; Harakat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami; and Jaish-e-Mohammed. He served as a close aide to Qari Saifullah Akhtar, the leader of the Harakat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami. In addition, Farooqi served as the group's representative to al Qaeda's International Islamic Front, which issued the 1998 fatwa that declared war on the US.

On April 15, 2012, the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan launched a successful operation to free Rasheed and nearly 400 prisoners, including an estimated 200 Taliban fighters and jihadists, being held at a prison in Bannu. The operation was directed by Hakeemullah Mehsud, the emir of the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan, and Waliur Rehman Mehsud, the group's emir for South Waziristan. More than 150 fighters assaulted the prison. Rasheed was later featured in a videotape celebrating the jailbreak.

Since Rasheed has been freed from prison, the Taliban have featured him in several propaganda tapes. Most recently, on Jan. 29, Rasheed appeared in a joint Taliban and Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan video that announced the formation of of the Ansar al Aseer, a unit tasked to free jihadist prisoners and support their families. The video also featured Yassin Chouka, a wanted German commander in the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan; and Abdul Hakeem, a Russian IMU member.



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READER COMMENTS: "Pakistani Taliban threaten former President Musharraf with 'death squad'"

Posted by Mr T at March 26, 2013 12:30 PM ET:

Murderers being led by a convicted murderer threatening to murder a Muslim. These guys are just following the devil.

Posted by mike merlo at March 26, 2013 2:00 PM ET:

Personally I never thought Musharraf would 'set foot' in Pakistan again. The schemes, plots, 'attempts,' etc., to assassinate Musharraf should make for some entertaining reporting.

Posted by wallbangr at March 26, 2013 4:29 PM ET:

Surrender yourself? Hahahaha. Sure, pal. I'd rather be vaporized by a suicide bomber or gut shot by a sniper than willingly put myself into the hands of these neanderthals. I'm sure their "warrior" ethos would appreciate my being a good sport by surrendering. Ask all the FC troops that became gore-porn fodder for the DVDs sold in local bazzars when they decided not to fight back.

Posted by irebukeu at March 26, 2013 4:29 PM ET:

"Musharraf returned to Pakistan yesterday and said he is seeking to return to politics."

What? This sounds crazy. How is he going to campaign?. From inside a TV studio?

Is he seeking to take advantage of a long list of potential candidates?


Posted by Neo at March 26, 2013 8:11 PM ET:

Who didn't see this coming?

Posted by Moose at March 26, 2013 11:48 PM ET:

He was being held in Bannu? Lol! I wonder what the terms b/w Islamabad and the TTP were in that deal!

Posted by Birbal Dhar at March 27, 2013 8:03 AM ET:

If you seen the video, he also tries to rope in the Baluchis to join with the TTP. Interestingly there isn't really much on the ideology of the Baluchi insurgents fighting against the Pakistani Army. Apart from fighting for an independent state, we don't know whether the Baluchi insurgents want a shariah state in their own independent state or to have a secular state. Also I've not heard of news of Baluchi insurgents fighting against the TTP or the Afghan Taliban in Baluchistan where many are hiding. It looks like for convenience, they try and avoid conflicts with each other.

Posted by Infidel4LIFE at March 27, 2013 12:34 PM ET:

He will meet the same end as Benazir Bhutto, going back AND trying to gain office, who would have thought? He is "drunk with power?" or thirsts for it again? He dies, so be it.

Posted by Nick at March 27, 2013 4:07 PM ET:

This is what we call "beer and popcorn" time!

Posted by nam at April 1, 2013 4:28 AM ET:

This is what we call "beer and popcorn" time!

Posted by Syed Adnan Waqar at April 2, 2013 7:02 AM ET:

I don't know how to say whether it was complicity of Pakistan ISI that led the jailbreak or what. But for sure, this murderer is going to roam freely and will shed the blood of innocent Pakistanis mercilessly. You can see videos posted by these worshipers of Satan how they are slaughtering people and enjoying that job. They are the same terrorists who destroyed Iraq and same animals who are destroying Syrian people and US , Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar are directly responsible for the slaughter of Syrian people as they keep on funding the terrorists and keep on channeling the terrorists form Tunisia, Libya and other Salafi countries in the world. It may happen that Asad withdrew from a large part of Syria but I can assure US and its allies that the same terrorists would turn their guns at you and will make a safe haven for Al-qaeda.