The commander, who went by the alias Abu “Khalid,” or Shahid Showkat, was highly sought by Indian security forces for his role in orchestrating attacks targeting Indian military positions and personnel.
The blow comes just two weeks after President Trump called out Pakistan for providing “safe haven” for terrorist groups operating in the region and advocated for closer ties with India.
Pakistan’s denial of harboring terrorist groups that conduct attacks outside of its borders falls flat on its face when looking at Lashkar-e-Taiba, which not only supports al Qaeda and the Taliban, but has executed numerous attacks inside of Pakistan’s neighbor and enemy, India, as well as in Afghanistan.
Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) has released a 20-page code of conduct outlining its approach to waging jihad throughout the region. The group says its men are currently fighting “shoulder-to-shoulder” with the Taliban and calls on Muslims in the surrounding countries to pledge allegiance to the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (another name for the Taliban).
India said it killed “up to 38 terrorists and Pakistani soldiers” in cross-border strikes against seven different targets in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. India claimed it recorded the raids via drones. Pakistan denied Indian troops entered its territory.
Jihadists killed 17 Indian troops and wounded dozens more in a suicide assault on a military base in Jammu and Kashmir. Jaish-e-Mohammed is thought to have carried out a similar attack on an Indian air base in January.
Pakistan called the killing of Burhan Wani by Indian troops “deplorable and condemnable,” despite the fact that he was a known terrorist recruiter and military commander. This condemnation highlights Pakistan’s support for terrorist groups throughout the region.
The US government and intelligence services have consistently underestimated the strength of AQIS, which is an official branch of al Qaeda that is based in Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh.