After BKU attack, TTP coming apart at the seams

Published: February 1, 2016
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Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan Chief Mullah Fazlullah. PHOTO: FILE

Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan Chief Mullah Fazlullah. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistani Taliban face another possible split as a top commander who claimed responsibility for the Bacha Khan University assault is upset with the central leadership for disowning the attack and promising action against the perpetrators.

A joint council of the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the Jamaat-ul-Ahrar and the Mangal Bagh-led Lashkar-e-Islam has also been dissolved over lack of interest by TTP’s fugitive chief Mullah Fazlullah, a Taliban leader told The Express Tribune on Sunday.

NAP. Snore. Repeat.

The five-member council was formed in March last year after the three groups decided to work in tandem after their hideouts were in the tribal regions were decimated in military offensives. The army says all militant groups now operate from the Afghan side of the border.

“Umar Mansoor faced a huge embarrassment when the TTP’s central leadership disavowed any role in the Charsadda attack,” said the Taliban leader, who requested not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the matter.

He is now acting as an independent commander and even introduced himself as the leader of the Taliban in the Darra Adam Khel region in a recent interview with a foreign radio that indicates his serious differences with the central leadership. This is the first time he has introduced himself this way, the commander added.

TTP, Mullah Fazlullah not behind Bacha Khan University attack: Khorasani

Umar, who also recently released a video along with the alleged BKU attackers, did not mention the TTP chief in the recording, although he had mentioned and praised Fazlullah in his previous video messages after the Peshawar school and Badhaber PAF base attacks.

The TTP spokesman did not respond to a query sent to him on the group’s official email address if any action has been taken against Umar for the massacre of over 20 students and staff at the BKU.

Some Taliban sources doubt the authority of the TTP leadership to take action against Umar, who is considered among a few powerful commanders still attached to the outlawed group. He was among the three senior leaders associated with Fazlullah at a time when the TTP faced a split after the death of Hakimullah Mehsood in late 2013, a Taliban leader says. The other senior leaders were Khalid Haqqani, the TTP deputy chief and Sheharyar Mehsud, who led a splinter faction of the Mehsud tribe Taliban.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 1st,  2016.

Reader Comments (9)

  • Saad
    Feb 1, 2016 - 9:10AM

    Talks are the only way forward.Recommend

  • Shoaib
    Feb 1, 2016 - 10:35AM

    There should be targeted strikes against the outlawed leadership. These wont heed to talks nor they seem interested. They would talk only to recuperate their strength. First, the hardcore leadership should be nurtured and then political participation should be granted to the locals. Remember, what is happening in Iraq is a direct result of lack of political participation.Recommend

  • j
    Feb 1, 2016 - 12:39PM

    We don’t need to make fifference among them. We have to crush all those who are enemies of peace and humanity. So this debate is useless rather wastage of time. Recommend

  • Acorn Guts
    Feb 1, 2016 - 1:34PM

    @Saad:
    If central TTP command is losing control over these deadly smaller factions then I’m not sure how beneficial talks with the central TTP command will be.

    They will happily admit ceasefire as they have become very weak but these smaller factions will still need to be dealt with.Recommend

  • Afaaq
    Feb 1, 2016 - 1:45PM

    Why is the narrative of terrorists portrayed as they deserve recognition? Recommend

  • US CENTCOM
    Feb 1, 2016 - 9:04PM

    Any possible disharmony among the terrorist groups should be seen in a positive light. The divide among these certain factions benefits our shared goal to negate the common threat of terrorism. At the same time, these terrorists group still remain a major threat in the Afghanistan and Pakistan region, as evident by the recent attack on the Bacha Khan University. It should be acknowledged that Pakistan’s military offensive has certainly weakened their operations, and according to various reports, terrorist attacks have declined throughout the country. Commander-designate U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan, Lt. Gen John Nicholson, said: “The military operation being carried out by Pakistan’s Army in the tribal region is critical to defeating terrorism.”

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/1037367/operation-zarb-e-azb-has-reduced-militants-ability-to-use-pakistani-soil-us-commander/

    The wounds from the attack are still afresh, and it is apparent from the readers’ comments that majority feel no mercy should be given to these enemies of peace. While these terrorists have tried everything to gain control in the last decade, to their disappointment, they have been unable to break our common stance against terrorism. We stand with Pakistan during this difficult time, and have full confidence in the government’s ability to eradicate the menace of terrorism.

    Ali Khan
    Digital Engagement Team, USCENTCOMRecommend

  • feedback
    Feb 2, 2016 - 12:34AM

    TTP is a myth.Recommend

  • syed & syed
    Feb 2, 2016 - 2:36AM

    @j USA have a very advanced technology of Drones targeting within a range of less then one meter. Nawaz Government goes round the world with a Kashkol. Why feel shame in asking USA to hit the targets:Pak Army is doing very well but the targets are beyond borders of PakistanRecommend

  • khattak
    Feb 2, 2016 - 2:45AM

    there are 35 of these terror groups mainly export oreinted but only 4 mad dogs were enough to do the damage to Uni students at Bacha Khan university. US needs to help Pakistan in reversing the jihadi mentality & closing down nurseries of terror. Recommend

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