The Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has reportedly taken responsibility for an attack on a Rangers vehicle near Safoora Chowrangi on December 9. The TTP made the claim via a statement that was posted on several jihadi websites which regularly feature content from the TTP and other militant groups.
However, the statement could not be independently verified. Three Rangers officials were killed and four were injured in the December 9 attack.
In the statement, the TTP claims that it destroyed the Rangers’vehicle through an “explosive canister”, and that its operation was revenge for the death of Mujahid Abdul Moeed bin Abdul Salam ‘Abu Umar’, who it claims was killed in a raid by the Rangers on November 18. While the Rangers claimed that Moeed’s case was closed, the Federal Investigation Agency’s report “did not find any link between the suspect and any local or international terrorist outfit and the suspect had no criminal or terrorism record.”
Rangers officials have said that Moeed blew himself up with a hand grenade to avoid arrest during the raid. The Global Islamic Media Front, which the Long War Journal website describes as a “propaganda outlet for al Qaeda”, announced Moeed’s death in a statement.
The group said Moeed was assigned to GIMF’s “Language and Translation Department” and helped to create the Qadisiya Foundation for Media “to translate media material into the languages of the Indian subcontinent.”
His job, according to GIMF, was to “bring the voice of the Mujahideen generally and the Mujahideen of the Taliban of Pakistan as well as the Mujahideen of al-Qaeda specifically in several languages.
So he created local media groups and Jihadi websites and forums in Asian languages, especially Urdu, English, Bengali, and Pashto.” Senior Rangers official Colonel Shafiq Niazi said that anyone could post a claim on the internet and attribute it to a so-called terrorist organisation. “The claims made online cannot be verified independently,” he said. “ Since the source can never be discovered, we don’t give it any importance.”
Published in The Express Tribune, December 16th, 2011.