Mullah Mohammed Omar, the Amir al Mumineen (“the commander of the faithful”) of the Afghan and Pakistani Taliban.
Dawn reported that Pakistan’s defense minister admitted Mullah Omar’s Quetta Shura is in Pakistan, but said it is no longer a threat:
The government has admitted the existence of the Afghan Taliban’s Quetta shura for the first time, and says it has taken them on.
In an exclusive interview with DawnNews, Defence Minister, Ahmad Mukhtar said security forces have taken on the Quetta shura and have damaged it to such an extent that it no longer poses any threat.
A recent report by General Stanley McChrystal, the top US Commander in Afghanistan, alleged that the top Taliban leadership was in Quetta and that they were master-minding attacks on international forces in Afghanistan.
However, until this admission by the Defence Minister – the government has so far denied the existence of any Taliban leadership or the Quetta shura – in Balochistan’s capital.
Defense Minister Mukhtar’s claims are highly suspect, to put it mildly. There have been no reports of members of the Quetta Shura killed or captured. And that is something that couldn’t be suppressed for long. I don’t think it would be an exaggeration to say that the arrest or death of Omar at the hands of the Pakistanis would have an effect on the Taliban greater by an order of magnitude than the government’s assault on the Red Mosque in Islamabad. Any move against Omar would ignite Taliban groups led by Mullah Nazir, the Haqqanis, and Hafiz Gul Bahadar, not to mention the pro-Taliban political parties in Pakistan.
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