A recent wave of attacks against the Afghan Taliban in various parts of Balochistan Province has killed several leaders of the militant group. A bomb on Friday at a madrassa in Kuchlak, outside Quetta, killed the brother of Afghan Taliban chief Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada, according to sources. In a separate assassination on Saturday , militants killed Mullah Muhammad Azam Akhund, another key Taliban leader and a close ally of Haibatullah in Killi Qasim of Kuchlak, the ministry sources said.
Taliban leaders are attempting to spin a damaging, ongoing investigation by Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency into the numerous businesses and investments in Pakistan suspected of belonging to the group’s leaders. “The Afghan Taliban are mainly using refugee areas for shelter,” a senior intelligence official said on the condition of anonymity.
The thousand refugees unregistered can be significantly worse than their registered counterparts. Forty years of service to refugees now it’s time to send them back to their home country, now it’s should not extend it further for any reason because they are a complete burden on the economy besides being a serious security risk. They should be allowed to stay back for a variety of reasons, including security and economic.
The Taliban had a strong presence in Balochistan’s Pashtun-populated areas, including Chaman, Kuchlak, Pashin, Saranan, Pashtunabad and the Eastern Bypass area of Quetta, among others. The new wave of target killings has not been claimed by anyone. The Afghan Taliban, who are negotiating a peace deal with the US in Doha, were quick to release a statement that the killing of their chief’s brother would not impact the talks.
These developments suggest that the recent spree of killings stems either from infighting in the Taliban or actions of foreign hostile agencies. Factions within the Taliban might have sprung into action after the insurgents as well as US officials mentioned significance progress in talks. Some foreign agencies that want to thwart the US-Taliban deal could also be behind the fresh bloodshed. “Our law enforcement agencies are actively working to eliminate anti-peace groups from the region.
On our soil, the Afghan Taliban” are keeping a low profile and “they are using the cover of Afghan refugees to hide their identity.” Following the Kuchlak bombing, “large-scale scrutiny started in Balochistan to identify those madrassas that are not affiliated with the Wifaq ul Madaris Al-Arabia, a religious curriculum board of Pakistan.” “Last year, a senior member of the Taliban’s central shura, Mullah Kochie, was also assassinated in Kuchlak; however, that attack was not claimed by any group,” the official added.
The recent attacks point towards presence of Taliban elements in Balochistan, creating multiple security challenges for the government and the local population, such as the Shia Hazara. The government must take action against the district administration that let foreign citizens work in local mosques without any check. This cannot happen without the active support of local sleeper or active cells of militants or those sympathetic to militant groups in Afghanistan. The world would again put Pakistan under the spotlight.
Over the years, we have been denying the presence of the so-called Quetta Shura of the Afghan Taliban. The security forces must purge Balochistan and other parts of the country from such militant groups. Pakistan should not become the sanctuary of the Taliban for the sake of the security of its own people. “It is time for Pakistan to take strict action against those groups disturbing peace in both neighbouring countries,” he said.
“For Pakistan, it must be a matter of deep concern that Afghan Taliban militants are running madrassas in Balochistan. It cannot be ruled out that those madrassas may also be used to recruit fighters.” “Pakistan cannot afford the war of external elements on soil; therefore, our foreign policy needs to revisit the matter.” “Without the complete elimination of militant groups, the state cannot accomplish its goal of lasting peace in the country.”