The abduction and brutal murder of a senior Pakistani police officer in Afghanistan and the follow-up behaviour of Afghan authorities indicate involvement of more than a terrorist organisation, said the Pakistani military moments after the body of SP Tahir Khan Dawar was handed over to Pakistani authorities at a border crossing after high drama Thursday evening.
SP Dawar disappeared on October 26 while taking a walk in the F-10 area of Islamabad and was presumed abducted by terrorists. On Wednesday, photographs purporting to show Dawar’s badly tortured body surfaced on social media.
The body was later found in the Dur Baba district of the volatile Afghan province of Nangarhar, which borders Pakistan, with a hand-written note saying he was abducted and killed by a little-known terrorist group. The body was buried at a cemetery in the Momand Dara area of Dur Baba from where it was exhumed on Wednesday and shifted to the Jalalabad headquarters hospital for autopsy.
“[The] brutal murder of SP Tahir in Afghanistan is highly condemnable. We have lost a brave police officer,” the chief military spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor wrote on his official Twitter handle.
“His abduction, move to Afghanistan, murder and follow-up behaviour of Afghan authorities raise questions which indicate involvement or resources more than a terrorist organisation in Afghanistan,” he said.
Maj Gen Ghafoor, the director general, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), reiterated call for cooperation from Kabul in investigation into the gruesome murder of SP Dawar.
“While investigations by Pakistani authorities are in process, we reiterate that Afgan security forces to cooperate in border fencing and bilateral border security coordination to deny use of Afghan territory against Pakistan,” he said in another tweet.
A day earlier, Pakistan’s Foreign Office demanded that the Afghan authorities conduct an immediate investigation into the murder of SP Dawar after they confirmed the “body found by locals” in Dur Baba was him.
At home, Prime Minister Imran Khan also ordered an inquiry and directed the authorities in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa to coordinate with the Islamabad police for the probe. He tasked State Minister for Interior Shaharyar Afridi with overseeing the inquiry.
Shaharyar Afridi told lawmakers Thursday that the government would pursue whoever killed SP Dawar. “He twice escaped suicide bombings in recent years,” he said of Dawar.