Archive for February 20th, 2009

Blast after Blast : This Fate Is Must for a Terrorist State like Pakistan

February 20, 2009

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During a protest in Lahore on Friday (20/02/09) against a suicide attack in Dera Ismail Khan. A suicide bomber ran into a crowd of mourners at the funeral of a slain Shi`ite Muslim leader, killing 30 people and triggering a rampage by enraged mobs. – AFP
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Bomb kills 28 at Shiite funeral in Pakistan

Friday, 20 February , 2009, 12:01
Last Updated: Friday, 20 February , 2009, 14:28
Sources: Indian Express, http://www.sify.com , Press Trust of India.

Islamabad: A bomb tore through a funeral procession for a slain Shiite Muslim leader in northwestern Pakistan on Friday, killing at least 28 people and wounding scores more, officials said.
Rising sectarian attacks threaten to further destabilize nuclear-armed Pakistan just as it faces intense international pressure to crack down on Islamist militants. Friday’s explosion struck a 1,000-strong crowd streaming toward a graveyard in Dera Ismail Khan for the burial of Sher Zeman, a Shiite leader who was gunned down in the city the day before.
Ashiq Salim, a doctor at the main hospital in the city of Dera Ismail Khan, said 28 bodies had been brought there and that medics were scrambling to treat another 157 people who were wounded. Police said people angered by the attack fired on officers rushing to the scene, where TV footage showed a bloodstained street littered with shoes and torn clothing.
An Associated Press reporter in the city heard the gunfire and said troops had arrived to help restore order. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. Relations between Pakistan’s strong Sunni majority and Shiite minority are under growing strain from a series of attacks attributed to sectarian extremists.
In the deadliest recent incident, a car bomb killed 29 people and wounded scores near a Shiite mosque in Peshawar in December last. On February 5, a suicide bomber killed 24 at a Shiite mosque in a central city Dera Gazi Khan. Much of the bloodshed has been in the northwest, where the Taliban have seized control of swaths of territory including the Swat Valley, where they have defied a yearlong army operation.
Troops and militants have been observing a cease-fire in Swat since Sunday, when authorities announced a deal to introduce Islamic law in the area if militants lay down their arms. Richard Holbrooke, the new US envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, said on Thursday that he had raised concern about the deal during a phone call with Pakistan’s president.

Pak Heaven for Terrorists

February 20, 2009

Terrorists have found haven in Pakistan: Clinton

Created on : 02/20/2009 9:20:12 AM (TOP 3)

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Washington, Feb 20 (UNI) US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said terrorists and their allies have found a haven in Pakistan and the situation there is causing concern.

”Look at Pakistan, a country that we know has to be stabilised for the benefit of not only South Asia, but beyond,” Ms Clinton said in an interview to the ABC news. ”It is where the terrorists and their allies have found haven,” she added.

She said, ”The economy in Pakistan is under even greater pressure now because of the global economic crisis. If Pakistan becomes even more unstable, that increases the danger we will face by the extremists to the Pakistan government.” Asked about reports of shariah law being imposed in the Swat valley as part of a peace deal between the government and militants, and Pakistani officials saying the government will not undertake any more offensive attacks on militants, Ms Clinton said there had been some ”contradictory reports” and that she wanted to ”get the whole picture” before commenting.

”Look, the entire situation in Pakistan is a concern,” she said, adding, ”That is why we are looking at a policy review at Pakistan and Afghanistan.” President Barack Obama last week announced the review of the US policy in Afghanistan, to be led by Brookings Institution senior fellow and former CIA official Bruce Riedel. The US government’s appointed special representative for the region, Richard Holbrooke, recently visited Pakistan, Afghanistan and India to assess the situation in the region.

UNI XC SKB RN0923

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Indian Muslim Raziuddin Naser’s 18-month, multi-location Terrorist Training Programme in Pakistan

India’s Internal Security Challenged by Pakistan

Ashok Malik , Journalist , Hindustan Times Writes

“Our Internal Insecurity”

On the morning of January 11, 2008, at Honnali on the Hosur-Hubli road in Karnataka, a policeman stopped two young men riding a motorcycle. One of them was not wearing a helmet. The usual questions followed, papers were demanded and it was found that the motorcyclists were carrying several number-plates, ostensibly assigned in several states.
The two men were arrested. One of them, Raziuddin Naser, originally from Hyderabad, turned out to be a key operative of the Students’ Islamic Movement of India (Simi) — later to metamorphose into the Indian Mujahideen (IM) — somebody the Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat Police had been seeking.
Naser and his accomplice were on their way to Goa, as he told interrogators, to “conduct serial blasts… to kill Israeli and American tourists“. If that mission had gone well, he was due to travel to Bangalore to attempt to bomb installations of IT companies. Naser’s statement before the Karnataka police makes for fascinating reading. In the context of the rather pointless debate about whether the ten Pakistani terrorists who attacked Mumbai on November 26, 2008, had “local support” or did not, it is worth revisiting what Naser told his questioners about the methods and motivational protocols of domestic jihadists.
Of course, no single interrogation or piece of evidence can reveal the entire truth. Yet, from what intelligence and anti-terrorist agencies have gathered over the past year — the Anti-Terrorist Squads (ATS) in Lucknow, Mumbai and Gandhinagar, in particular, are sitting on a mine of information, as are police officers in locations as far apart as Bhopal and Hyderabad — the different, disparate pieces of the jigsaw begin to fit. It becomes obvious that the interoperability of and relationship between groups such as the IM and external agents recruited in, say, Pakistani Punjab and trained in Lashkar-e-Tayyeba (LeT) camps, are neither absolute nor completely absent.
Naser is the son of a religio-political preacher called Mohammed Naseeruddin. Secretary of the Hyderabad-based Tehreek Tahfuzz Shaeer-e-Islam, the father was once arrested by the local police for terror-related activities. In October 2004, he was arrested by the Gujarat Police in the Old City of Hyderabad, in an operation that was hindered by massive crowds and led to firing in which a local youth was killed. By then, Naser and at least one of his brothers — now also in the custody of the Karnataka Police — were already converts. Naser explained that after 9/11, he had been much taken with the idea of joining the jihad against America in Afghanistan.In August 2005, he travelled to Saudi Arabia, a trip facilitated by a Hyderabadi friend whose brother, Abdul Samad, lived in Jeddah. Samad sent Naser for what eventually became an 18-month, multi-location training programme in Pakistan.
It is here that the story gets interesting. Naser describes different types of training in different cities. From Karachi, he is driven to Gwadar (Baluchistan), where he is introduced — along with others — to the use of assault rifles that include AK-47s, light-machine guns, “Bren machine guns…. Austrian Styre sniper rifles” and so on.
At the LeT complex of Markaz Tayyabah, near Lahore, he is taught horse riding. In Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, in Muzaffarabad and Manshehra — where one of his co-trainees is a Maldives national called ‘Abu Zaid’, who Naser says was later killed in the Kashmir Valley — and in a “mountainous” training centre he learns about “guerrilla warfare, ambush, hideout, raid, camouflage, recce…” In Rawalpindi, he learns of the “use of satellite phones… [and] disadvantages of using mobile and land lines”. In PoK again, he mixes hydrogen peroxide with rice, dal, mehndi and tobacco, and produces explosives. When Naser was arrested, he was on his way to waylay a truck that he knew was carrying hydrogen peroxide — a chemical that has industrial uses but is also present in cosmetics. He was to carry a part of his loot to Goa and execute the bombings. The use of hydrogen peroxide, easily available and not as difficult to source as say RDX, was seen as a cheap, low-cost terror mechanism.
It is worth noting that the 2008 terror bombings in, for example, Delhi and Ahmedabad also used commonly accessible chemicals. Earlier, two suspected terrorists had been arrested in Goa — in an incident unrelated to Naser — while working in a beauty parlour, attempting to pilfer cosmetics and hydrogen peroxide.
On January 1, 2008, in preparation for the Goa mission, a contact called ‘Aslam’ had visited Naser in Hubli and gave him two fake student identity cards — of BVB College of Engineering, Hubli, and of St Aloysius College. Ironically, the terrorists who attacked the Taj Mahal and Oberoi Hotels in Mumbai also carried student identity cards related to Karnataka-based colleges. Is this suggestive of a local link, admittedly a low-level and possibly non-lethal one, or is this a mere coincidence?
Was the intensive, sometimes commando-style training Naser got indicative of his recruiters identifying him for a high-profile urban guerrilla-style attack and then deciding he wasn’t up to it and demoting him to the less sophisticated, hydrogen peroxide type bombings? Do the 26/11 attacks and the dozen-odd bombings that major Indian cities experienced in 2007-08 form a continuum? To the UPA government, have these become inconvenient truths?

(Ashok Malik is a Delhi-based writer)

Source: Hindustan Times ,February 19, 2009

Pakistan based LeT’s plan to black out India, six states warned of strikes against power grids and hydro-electric projects

LeT planned to black out India?

19 Feb 2009, Times Now

NEW DELHI: In times of terror comes the revelation that the Intelligence agencies had warned at least six state governments of Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) strikes against power grids and hydro-electric projects across the country.
TIMES NOW has acquired an exclusive copy of a letter sent by the Intelligence Bureau (IB), which states that the LeT may strike grid stations across the country and that the outfit had recently collected information regarding the stations.
The letter is different from the routine warnings sent out by the IB, as it highlights the following:
1) The letter has been marked secret
2) It has been sent to the chief secretaries /home secretaries, DGPs and other top police officials
3) It was sent four days after the November 26, 2008 Mumbai terror attacks
4) The letter has warned states that the LeT had collected information regarding grid stations in the country and are planning attacks
Sources have told TIMES NOW that the IB has more evidence on the LeT’s plan of action and their research work on our country’s hydroelectric power projects.
The document also cautions the state governments to take necessary steps to thwart any such attempts. But what is causing serious concern is the fact that many states have dismissed this letter as a mere routine warning leaving these vital installations vulnerable.
PS Prashanth, Kerala state secretary, electricity employees confederation said, “After the Mumbai attacks, we know that our grid stations are also highly vulnerable. At present the security arrangements are not up to the mark. We need more security only then will we be able to safeguard our hydroelectric projects.”
Kerala alone has 29 hydroelectric power projects. For instance, if Moolamattom station in the state’s Idukki district is striked, 4 major districts of Kerala will submerge in water. There are many more hydroelectric projects that may cause serious destruction if attacked, and in this scenario, the low security in the grid stations is a major cause for concern.
L-e-T has a strong base in Pakistan & Pak occupied Kashmir aiming to dismantle India.

Inside Pakistan : Who will Rule the Nation ? Talibani or Pakistani ?

February 20, 2009

‘Swat deal shows Pak inability to stop Talibanisation’
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Pakistani journalists protest against a killing of a TV journalist, Musa Khan Khel, in Swat valley. (AP)

Washington: The Swat Valley peace deal between the extremists and Pakistan Government strengthens the Taliban’s hand in that country, noted an eminent South Asian expert.
The Swat peace agreement should raise alarm bells in Washington about the Pakistani state’s inability to stop spreading Talibanisation in the province, said Lisa Curtis, Senior Research Fellow for South Asia at the prestigious Heritage Foundation’s Asian Studies Center.
Observing the Obama administration has reacted cautiously to this news, Curtis said this sends a signal of weakness in the region precisely at the time the US needs to demonstrate resolve against the forces of extremism and terrorism.
“Washington’s prevarication on the take-over of the Swat Valley by pro-Taliban forces undermines US policy in the region and raises the critical question of why the US would send troops to fight the Taliban in Afghanistan, while standing by as Islamist extremists gain ground in neighbouring Pakistan,” Curtis said.

An Imprint of Islamic Brutality……..
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32 bullet wounds on slain Pak reporter

Press Trust of India
Islamabad, Feb. 19: The body of slain TV reporter Musa Khan Khel was riddled with 32 bullet wounds in what is being described as a “deliberate and planned” killing in volatile Swat, as hundreds of Pakistani journalist
s today took out protest marches across north-west Pakistan and vowed not to back down.
The killing of 28-year-old Musa, a Swat correspondent for private Geo TV, by unknown gunmen triggered a wave of anger among the journalists who condemned the killings of scribes in the troubled region. The attacks against mediamen is an attempt to scare them away from the restive region, they said.
The journalists wearing black bands on their arms and foreheads shouted slogans like “We want justice!”, “We want Musa Khan Khel’s killers arrested!” and “We salute Musa Khan Khel’s courage!”, as they staged protests outside the Governor’s house in the main NWFP city of Peshawar.
Musa’s colleague Hamid Mir said they would not be cowed down and will not stop reporting from the tense Swat region and demanded that the killing be investigated and those responsible brought to justice. Marches were taken out in Peshawar, Banu, Nowshera and Mansher ~ all in the NWFP.
At the rally at Swat, where the reporter was killed, speakers, including Hamid Mir and journalist union leaders, termed the killing as “deliberate and cold-blooded” so that the “happenings” there do not reach the outside world.
Mir said Musa’s killing was “deliberate and planned” as his body had as many as 32 gunshot wounds.
Azhar Abbas, the managing director of Geo, said Musa had been shot several times in his upper body, and his throat was partly slit.

‘Pak set to open new front against India’

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Fri, Feb 20 02:59 AM
The time has come for India to take a firm stand on terrorism and initiate stern actions – be it political or military – against Pakistan. It has become important after Al Qaeda recently issued a warning against India to “lay off its hands from Pakistan or face the consequences”.
India should convey it to Pakistan and other countries perpetrating terrorism against us that we are capable of facing any threat coming from any quarter. While Union Home Minister P Chidambram has already made it clear that the Indian Army is well prepared to face any attacks on its soil, there is a need to convey the message.
Pakistan is taking no action against the terrorist organisations that planned the audacious Mumbai terror attack last year. India has not received any official response from Pakistan on the dossier pertaining to investigations into the Mumbai attacks.
It is clear with the warning from Al Qaeda that Pakistan is all set to open a new front against India.

The terror infrastructure in Pakistan is active even though they seek to convey an impression that they are taking action against terrorists and their infrastructure.The number of camps operating in Pakistan and Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir has seen a significant increase from 32 in 2005 to 53 in 2008. Before the Al Qaeda moves towards India with its entire infrastructure, there is a need to nip their objectives in the bud.
Express News Service
Source : Yahoo.com/home page, 20/02/2009