Fighting continues in Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier Province

NWFP/FATA map. Red agencies/ districts openly controlled by the Taliban; purple is defacto control; yellow is under threat. Click map to view.

Taliban maintain attack tempo as the government scrambles to save the Waziristan Accord

The Taliban attacks against military and government targets throughout the Northwest Frontier Province have remained steady despite government efforts to renegotiate the Waziristan Accord. The largest attack occurred in the settled district of Bannu, which borders North and South Waziristan, where the Taliban and al Qaeda are their strongest. Taliban fighters launched a rocket attack into the heart of Bannu City, killing 14 and wounding 35. A hotel, a government official’s residence, and a bazaar were hit in the rocket barrage, The News reported. The Bannu strike was but the most high profile attack to occur in the NWFP over the past 24 hours.

In Bajaur, where Faqir Mohammed and his banned Tehrik-e-Nifaz-e-Shariat-e-Mohammadi (TNSM – the Movement for the Implementation of Mohammad’s Sharia Law) rule, two government soldiers were kidnapped while manning a checkpost and beheaded. “The militants slit their throats and dumped their bodies at the bazaar with the note written in Pashto attached,” the Daily Times reported. “Those who support Musharraf and Bush will meet this fate,” the note said. Another man in Bajaur was accused of being a U.S. spy and beheaded last week, Dawn reported. The TNSM has direct links with al Qaeda and supported the radical clerics of the Lal Masjid, or Red Mosque, in Islamabad.

In North Waziristan, where talks between the government and the Taliban have stalled, multiple attacks against military and police checkposts are underway. An attack on a checkpost in Dattakhel resulted in four soldiers killed, while another checkpost was destroyed in Miramshah. Seven soldiers were wounded in two separate roadside bombing attacks. In neighboring Tank, police dismantled a large improvised explosive device placed on a road to Dera Ismail Khan.

The government negotiates with the Taliban in North Waziristan despite being the target of repeated attacks. The Taliban have demanded the military dismantle all checkposts, a demand the government initially refused but now seem willing to concede. “The government insisted that security checkposts would be removed only if tribal militants guaranteed peace in the region,” the Daily Times reported. “The pro-Taliban members of the jirga were asked if they could offer guarantees on behalf of the militants but the members said they would talk to the Taliban leadership to secure the assurance,” a member of the Jirga and a government official the Daily Times.

The Taliban refused to honor the spirit and the letter of the Waziristan Accord. Just days after the deal was inked, the Taliban in North Waziristan conducted a campaign of assassinations, attacked government forces, established a parallel government, opened recruiting offices, collected taxes, and launched attacks into Afghanistan. Yet the government is pleading with the Taliban to restore a deal that the Taliban never honored in the first place. And all the while, al Qaeda is building its command, control, training and recruiting programs in the region to attack Pakistan, Afghanistan, India and the West.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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7 Comments

  • Elroy Jetson says:

    Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.
    I hope that is Pakistan’s reason for negotiating with these terrorists.
    Otherwise, they are just damn fools.

  • joe says:

    These losses for the Pakistani army and police forces are bad enough but I wouldnt be suprised if they are much worse than whats even being said. This website reported that while the army claimed they lost 700 men in the last waziristan war the actual total was closer to 3,000. My geuss is they are doing what the Russians do when they sustain a loss in Chechnya. Unless there are a lot of witnesses they claim that the men were wounded meanwhile they were killed.
    //www.jamestown.org/chechnya_weekly/article.php?articleid=2373511
    I do not see the army taking heavy casualties in the tribal areas for Musharaff. My question is will the Takfiris led by zawahiri even sign a deal this time or will they go for victory like the newsweek article suggests.

  • joe says:

    Pakistani,
    Thanks for the comment. How is the Pakistan media reporting in the tribal areas? Can independent journalists still operate there with relative freedom of movement and speach or must they rely on the military or Jihadists for their story? I read Asia Times with Syed Saleem Shazdad and his articles are especially informative because of his excellent contacts with both the military and the Taliban but Im curious about the freedom of the press in those areas and Pakistan in general.

  • Raj Kumar says:

    Pakistani,
    So ‘Pakistan actually has a free media’ then perhaps you can explain how a free fire zone in the middle of Islamabad i.e. the Lal Masjid manages to get a few casualties but the NGO’s are reporting that GoP orders 1000+ shrouds * coffins from them. Which btw neither Jang/Dawn etc. manage to report!!!

  • Raj Kumar says:

    Pakistani,
    You don’t have to take my word on it. Please click on the link below and read what it Abdus Sattar says…..
    //www.thenews.com.pk/top_story_detail.asp?Id=8967
    1,100 shrouds ordered: Edhi
    ISLAMABAD: Renowned social worker Abdus Sattar Edhi said on Tuesday the government had asked him to prepare shrouds for 800 more bodies after already sending 300 to the Lal Masjid and Jamia Hafsa. Edhi termed the incident the worst of its kind in Pakistan. Edhi volunteers are carrying on their work to recover the bodies from the seminary and the mosque.
    Please explain how you have free media when no one in the so called ‘free media’ manages to follow up the above story….

  • RHYNO327 says:

    only a matter of time before p-stan becomes an islamic state, with radical goals, and nuclear weapons. how do these people know the pak military isn’t fighting back? it sounds like a t-ban rout. wat do you think bill…..?

  • RHYNO327 says:

    hope we have a contingency to nuke ur country mr. pakistani. i mean, thats wat the t-ban is after right? islamofacists started this mess, and i bet more than 80% of the pak populace HATES the US. this kind of ideology cannot be bargained with, they just know violence. so lets give them a mouth full.

Iraq

Islamic state

Syria

Aqap

Al shabaab

Boko Haram

Isis