For decades the country has permitted a number of jihadist groups to openly operate under its aegis. A map highlights the more prominent groups openly operating inside Pakistan.
Jani Khel in Paktia province has changed hands three times over the past two weeks. The loss of Jani Khel to the Taliban demonstrates the difficulties Afghan forces face in holding onto remote contested districts.
While the operational tempo of jihadist groups based in Pakistan has decreased significantly, they are still capable of executing horrific attacks and remain a major threat to the Pakistani state.
According to multiple reports, al Qaeda and its newest regional branch, al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent, are operating in the southern Afghan province of Helmand. Terrorists are being trained in Helmand to carry out operations throughout Southeast Asia. And As Sahab, al Qaeda’s propaganda arm, has operatives in the province as well.
Malik Ishaq has been in and out of Pakistani custody over the years, despite the fact that he was the head of one of the most violent jihadist groups in Pakistan and directed numerous terror attacks.
Matiur Rehman, who has served as a senior al Qaeda leader and the operations chief for Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, brought three Pakistani jihadist groups into the fold of the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan.
The spokesman for al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) has released a statement condemning the Pakistani Taliban’s attack on a Peshawar school earlier this week, calling it “un-Islamic.”
From Florida to al Qaeda: terror group’s external operations chief spent last years at Iran-Pakistan-Afghan border