Mehsud group announces separation from TTP

Published: May 28, 2014
Email
File photo of militants. PHOTO: REUTERS/FILE

File photo of militants. PHOTO: REUTERS/FILE

DERA ISMAIL KHAN / MIRANSHAH: Deepening fissures within the ranks of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) intensified when the Mehsud faction on Wednesday announced its separation from the TTP umbrella group, Express News reported.

Spokesperson of the group Azam Tariq, who was also a part of the Taliban shura, announced during a press conference from an undisclosed location that the Mehsud group – under the leadership of Ameer Khalid Mehsud – had decided to break away from the TTP.

Unhappy with the central leadership of TTP, Tariq claimed that the decision to split was taken after careful consideration.

Tariq claimed that TTP have fallen in the hands of conspirators and been involved in burglaries and extortion.

“We tried our best to stay united but failed,” he said, adding that the central leadership was being controlled by hidden forces.

Vowing to stop oppressors from doing wrong, Tariq said his group will call a meeting and decide their future course of action.

Analysis

Explaining what this separation means, government negotiator Rustam Shah Mohmand told Express News that Mehsud tribe had been heading the militant group since its beginning and it was not happy with Maulvi Fazlullah becoming the new chief.

“Since Mehsud tribe had suffered the most in this decade-long insurgency, it believes the leadership should stay with them,” Mohmand said, adding that the tribe also felt thousands of its members had lost their lives and been displaced from their hometowns and so the bloodshed should end.

“Mehsud tribe wants to make a deal with the government and live peacefully in order to protect the remaining members of the tribe and this created rift within the TTP,” Mohmand said.

The government negotiator added that time will tell if all Mehsuds will part ways with the TTP. He, however, said there is a chance more splinter groups will disassociate itself.

Expressing similar views to that of Mohmand, defence analyst Lt General (retd) Talat Masood, while speaking to Express News, stated that the Mehsud group never accepted Maulvi Fazlullah as their leader.

Implying that the separation might be good for Pakistan, he also said that terrorism in the country may reduce as a result of this separation.

Mehsud miseries

The Mehsud tribesmen make up 70% of the local population in South Waziristan but they no longer call the place their home but a safe haven for Taliban militants.

“Eighty per cent of Mehsud tribesmen have fled to other parts of the country,” Mohmand had told The Express Tribune. Of the agency’s estimated three million population, Mohmand had reckoned nearly 1.6 million now live in camps for ‘internally displaced persons’ (IDPs) – out of which three-fourths are Mehsud tribesmen.

While the displacement is owed largely to security operations and drone warfare targeting the Taliban’s central leadership which is mostly drawn from the Mehsud tribe, Mohmand had said the bloody strife also destroyed sources of livelihood.

In part, he had attributed the mass exodus to the breakdown of the Mehsud’s economic base because border trade with Afghanistan was the mainstay of local economy. With the agency in the grip of militants since 2004, Mohmand had said numerous Mehsud businessmen and their families have shifted to Islamabad and Lahore.

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (32)

  • Usman
    May 28, 2014 - 10:09AM

    What is the significance of this for the current War? This must be analysed as a priority by the politicians.

    Recommend

  • Ali
    May 28, 2014 - 10:15AM

    Extortion and burglaries are being carried out by TTP and yet in other para you say, ‘the group tried to stay united with TTP’ meaning despite knowing they are extortionists and burglars you still wanted to stay. Just goes to tell who you people are.

    Recommend

  • AZ
    May 28, 2014 - 10:17AM

    A good news for people of Pakistan,

    Recommend

  • Dark Knight
    May 28, 2014 - 10:22AM

    whether people believe it or not, this is due to the peace process started by the govt. If we had wagged a war all these different fraction would have been united against their “jihad” again us. This is just the beginning, i am sure more will separate and within a year TTP will collapse. This is exactly how you defeat the Taliban, just like the British crushed the 1857 war of independence, through the divide and rule policy!

    Recommend

  • Faruq
    May 28, 2014 - 10:49AM

    We need to find out the actual significance of this. Does it mean the TTP inner conflict will worsen? Or that the government can sidestep one group for now and divide and conquer? Or will one of them be more willing to lay down arms? I hope our journalists can answer these questions soon

    Recommend

  • numbersnumbers
    May 28, 2014 - 10:56AM

    Please note that the Mehsud group (The Good Taliban) need to separate themselves from the TTP (The Bad Taliban) so that they can remain untouched in the coming military operation(s) in North Waziristan! They are crucial Assets useful in destabilizing Afghanistan via terrorist strikes to achieve Strategic Depth against India!

    Recommend

  • MEHSUD
    May 28, 2014 - 11:01AM

    and now the establishment should do their duty .help good and kill bad …

    Recommend

  • RajaPeace
    May 28, 2014 - 11:03AM

    May Allaah guide the Mehsoods and if its not written for them then may Allaah make them a tool to keep this bloodshed to them and TTP

    Recommend

  • May 28, 2014 - 11:29AM

    Surprising and a very welcome development. The TTP breaking with more parting of ways expected…….this is like being served refreshing cold water after a trek through the desert. Salams

    Recommend

  • Gp65
    May 28, 2014 - 11:37AM

    @Dark Knight:
    British crushed the 1857 war of independence through a diide and rule and policy and not through actualy vanquishing those that rose against the empire militarily? Which hisory book taught you this?

    Recommend

  • hgh
    May 28, 2014 - 11:38AM

    Lets hope there is a peace in Pakistan real soon !!!

    Recommend

  • Ponka
    May 28, 2014 - 11:50AM

    This is just another episode of drama.. they are terrorist and will remain like that.. separation is just delusion like peace talks of the past..!

    Recommend

  • bajwa
    May 28, 2014 - 11:53AM

    These people have blemished the face of Islam and Pakistan.

    Recommend

  • Naveed Alam Khattak
    May 28, 2014 - 12:21PM

    i hope and pray that sacrifices made by our brave soldiers and common people will not be wasted and peace will prevail. this was clear from the day 1st that they are using the common and simple people of FATA & Waziristan in the name of Islam. Now it is the responsibility of Govt & Army to bring these areas in the main stream. These areas should not be ignored any more as they were ignored from the last 65 years and we never tried to own these people instead we used them for some others wars. Our media should highlight the good work (Roads, Bridges, Colleges & other social work) done by Army in South Waziristan. In my opinion, North Waziristan will be more easy as they are more educated as comapred to South Waziristan. There literacy rate is very good and they are more affiliated with Pakistan as compared to South.

    Recommend

  • May 28, 2014 - 12:25PM

    Means, Govt will have to negotiate with one more group now.

    Recommend

  • Blunt
    May 28, 2014 - 1:08PM

    To all their foreign paymasters: Now you have to find someone else to perform the duties of destabilizing Pakistan for you.Recommend

  • Ali Xaidi
    May 28, 2014 - 1:26PM

    First major breakthrough for Pakistan and apparently the first major achievement of Nawaz Sharif government in the War on Terrorism.

    Recommend

  • Ali
    May 28, 2014 - 1:28PM

    Did they also announce their separation from PTI as well?Recommend

  • wow
    May 28, 2014 - 1:30PM

    otherwise beheading was ok by these sub groups….?

    Recommend

  • Zain
    May 28, 2014 - 1:30PM

    vindicated Imran Khan’s stand

    you seriously talk and those willing to fight will be separate and victory will become easier.

    Recommend

  • salman
    May 28, 2014 - 2:07PM

    No suprise just another addition to militant groups

    Recommend

  • Uzair Malik
    May 28, 2014 - 2:09PM

    US withdrawal, TTP breaking up…Ground is being prepared for a test match. Now its our turn to bat, bravo ISI!

    Recommend

  • PeaceMonger
    May 28, 2014 - 3:11PM

    @Uzair Malik: Given their track record, your confidence is misplace.

    Recommend

  • May 28, 2014 - 6:00PM

    We certainly hope the news of Mehsud group separating itself from the TTP will result in reduction of terrorism from the country. These terrorist organizations have caused enough chaos and mayhem for over a decade. The credit goes to the Pakistani authorities for their counter terrorism efforts against the extremist organizations. The people of Pakistan also deserve all the credit for standing tall and refusing to accept terrorists’ evil ideology. Our nations have made a lot of sacrifices in our shared fight against extremism, and it would be safe to say that the things are looking up and we have every reason to remain optimistic in regards to achieving our shared peace objectives in the region.

    Ali Khan
    Digital Engagement Team, USCENTCOM

    Recommend

  • A
    May 28, 2014 - 7:37PM

    They are all one. This is only due to the army assault that they are seeking a way out. They were involved in oppression together. Army must not differentiate among them and eradicate them all. Only those who accept constitution and give up anti state activities should be spared.

    Recommend

  • MJ
    May 28, 2014 - 7:51PM

    I am pretty sure that the bikes and the vehicle in the background of the picture above were bought with halal earned money.

    End of sarcasm.Recommend

  • Ch Allah Daad
    May 28, 2014 - 8:26PM

    This development is mostly thanks to peace efforts that PTI led.

    Recommend

  • Arijit Sharma
    May 28, 2014 - 8:31PM

    Hope this does not lead to another Syria.

    Recommend

  • Faraz
    May 28, 2014 - 8:44PM

    “central leadership was being controlled by hidden forces.” does that ring a bell? anyone?

    we all know that india is that hidden force. our political leadership should boldly expose them in front of international media. i dont understand the logic behind these hypocritical friendship deal offers.

    Recommend

  • csmann
    May 28, 2014 - 10:36PM

    Good for them to realize that being mercenaries for misplaced ideologies is of no benefit to you and your people.Good for Mehsuds,Good for Pakistan,good for the world!!!

    Recommend

  • dhoom2
    May 30, 2014 - 1:21AM

    @Faraz – “we all know that India is that hidden force”

    If it’s India, then your establishment would have lost no opportunity to raise a stink and justify its anti-India activities.
    Or would it be your deep state, that runs with the hares and hunts with the hounds.

    Recommend

  • Madiha
    May 30, 2014 - 1:10PM

    it validates the old adage ‘kisi k liye garha khodo ge to pehle us mein khud giro ge’. This group destroyed lives and livelihoods of hundreds and thousands of Pakistanis, and now when their own losses are accumulating, they want out. Lol. Serves them right.

    I’m also wondering, what would they have done had the TTP agreed to give them the leadership of the movement? Would they have yearned for peace even then?

    Anyway, it validates what IK has been saying for ages now: not all groups in TTP are pro-war. some are now against it and we should continue the dialogue process so many more disagreements like this can surface among them, and we can focus on who exactly is willing to fight, and then deal with them accordingly.

    Recommend

More in Pakistan