Taliban rebuild children’s suicide camp in South Waziristan


Scores of children train to become suicide bombers at a camp run by Qair Hussain in Spinkai, South Waziristan. Image courtesy of AfPax Insider.

The Taliban have rebuilt a camp in South Waziristan that trains children to be suicide bombers, a video from Pakistan shows. Children as young as seven years old are indoctrinated to wage jihad in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The video, obtained by AfPax Insider, was shot in August in Spinkai Ragzai, South Waziristan, a tribal area run by Pakistani Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud. The Taliban are seen “training dozens of boys ranging in age from seven to 14,” the news service reported. “The video attempts to justify suicide bombings as a legitimate means of attack against “infidels.'”

The images shows the children reading from the Quran and an adult Taliban training the children. One slide shows a poster board with the words “Killing a Spy” written in English.

While not explicitly stated in the AfPax Insider report, the camp is run by Qari Hussain, a senior lieutenant to Baitullah who has close links to al Qaeda. Hussain has rebuilt his child training camp after the Pakistani military demolished his suicide nursery during a short offensive in Spinkai in January 2008.

In May, a senior Pakistani general described the previous camp as a “factory.” The military seized numerous documents and training materials in the demolished camp.

“It was like a factory that had been recruiting nine to 12-year-old boys, and turning them into suicide bombers,” said Major General Tariq Khan, the commander of Pakistan’s 14 Division, which led the operation in South Waziristan.

“The computers, other equipment and literature seized from the place … give graphic details of the training process in this so-called ‘nursery,'” Dawn reported in May. “There are videos of young boys carrying out executions, a classroom where 10- to 12-year olds are sitting in formations, with white band of Quranic verses wrapped around their forehead, and there are training videos to show how improvised explosive devices are made and detonated.”

The Pakistani military launched the operation in South Waziristan on Jan. 24 after Taliban forces commanded by Baitullah overran two military outposts and conducted attacks against other forts and military convoys in the tribal agency.

The Pakistani military reported that Hussain was killed in January after intercepting Taliban communications. The military later reiterated that claim during the tour of the Spinkai camp on May 18.

Scores of children train to become suicide bombers at a camp run by Qair Hussain in Spinkai, South Waziristan. Image courtesy of AfPax Insider. Click to view.

Hussain held a press conference at a government school building in South Waziristan five days later. During the interview,he mocked the reports of his death. “I am alive, don’t you see me?” Hussain said.

Hussain is believe to be in the running to succeed Baitullah Mehsud in the event of his death. Baitullah is suffering from complications related to kidney disease and was rumored to have died last week. Baitullah was later seen visiting villagers to celebrate Eid in towns throughout South Waziristan.

The Spinkai camp is one of 157 training camps and more than 400 support locations in the Taliban-controled tribal areas and in the Northwest Frontier Province.

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



  • David M says:

    The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the blog post From the Front: 10/07/2008 News and Personal dispatches from the front and the home front.

  • TLA says:

    Well, can we finally ask the media not to report ‘civilian’ deaths every time a little brat gets in the way of a bullet?

  • ST333 says:

    How morally righteous the Taliban and al Qaeda are. Sending 7-14 year old boys is probably Ok with Allah…..this is further proof they are nothing more then animals

  • Rhyno327/lrsd says:

    Wat a bunch of cowardly swine they are. This is where it starts, the brainwashing, peer pressure, the use of children as “tools” of terror. This is one address I would have to send our own “Operators” to kill, capture the swine in charge. Tell the children to leave, then put a couple 2000lb PGM’s through the roof. That is just barbaric. They want an Islamic caliphate that stretches from Bali to Barcelona, and seeing this makes that thought very believable.

  • khawar Rizvi says:

    There is a correction needed, the place where camp is located is named Spinkai Raghzi, not Spinkai , secondly, Qari Hussain no more operates from this place and also doesn’t run suicide camps . After developing some differences with Baitulah Mahsud he was moved to North Wazirstan from where he is also operating in Kurrum agency.

  • WATCHER says:

    Makes your blood run cold! On the other hand this kind of obvious moral (not to mention tactical) bankruptcy is a kind of back-handed compliment to Coalition forces: all the willing men are dead; these poor manipulated kids must surely represent something close to a last line of offence. Whenever people ask whether we can ever win the GWOT more than ever we can just say “Of course – because we are better than them”


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