PESHAWAR: Several militant groups are likely to face off in a clash as armed fighters have started taking positions inside Afghan territory near Pakistan's Mohmand agency bordering Afghanistan, reliable sources told Dawn.com on Saturday.

Groups of fighters comprising Lashkar-i-Taiba, Ansarul Islam, Afghan Taliban militants and local militia have started taking positions inside Afghan territory, safe havens for the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) from where they are known to have previously launched attacks inside Pakistan, the sources said.

The sources said an assault was imminent against the outlawed TTP militants, who have waged a war against the Pakistani state and launched several attacks against its Army.

Ehsanullah Ehsan, a spokesman for the banned militant group, confirmed an attack was planned against Pakistani Taliban positions inside Afghanistan’s Kunar province bordering Pakistan, but warned it may result in major bloodshed.

“We have old enmity with Ansarul Islam and some other militant groups who want to avenge their own fights and losses now. They are planning a major attack on us in the bordering areas along Mohmand Agency,” he said, speaking via telephone from an undisclosed location.

A Taliban insider said that the clash might be a continuation of the killing of militant commander Shah Sahib, who led another Islamist group engaged in fighting US-led Nato troops in Afghanistan and was based in Mohmand Agency since 2006.

TTP militants led by Umar Khalid Khurrasani attacked the training centre of the Shah group on July 19, 2008, killing many, including Shah Sahib. Most of the Shah Sahib loyalist were either kidnapped or killed and the group was eliminated from the Mohmand agency.

Most members of the group are presently part of tribal lashkars (local militias), and the attack being planned was part of their strategy to fight the TTP, said the Taliban insider.

Several Pakistani security personnel have been killed in attacks by hundreds of Taliban militants from alleged safe havens across the border in Afghanistan’s Kunar, Nuristan and Nangarhar provinces bordering Pakistani territory from Dir to Chitral.

Former Pakistani Ambassador to Afghanistan, Rustam Shah Mohmand said there were fears of a huge security vacuum following the planned withdrawal of US and Nato troops from Afghanistan.

The Afghan government has effectively no authority over the vast territory along the Pak-Afghan border, turning it into safe havens for militants, he said.

Shah called the recent tension "a fight for the territory and resources in the bordering area rather than a big clash."

"There is no writ of the Afghan government along the bordering belt with Pakistan. Both Afghan and Pakistani militants have their own interests in the region and infighting is only natural," he said.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Lashkar-i-Taiba denied any involvement in the events on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.

We are not part of any operation against any Taliban group either in Pakistan or Afghanistan, he said, claiming that their operations were only targeted against Indian forces and limited to Indian-administered Kashmir.

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Comments are closed.

Comments (25)

pakiboy
June 8, 2013 5:59 pm

purge these TTP and supporters !! .. dont let them escape to other cities !!

Javed
June 8, 2013 6:03 pm

Seems like perfect targets for some drone strikes to eliminate this cancer.

ksks
June 8, 2013 6:45 pm

militants killing militants! should there be cause of concern for us?

Pakistani
June 8, 2013 7:12 pm

Nice pic

Anees
June 8, 2013 7:23 pm

" ...speaking via telephone from an undisclosed location."? How is it possible for someone to speak from an "undisclosed" location in this age of highly advanced technology?

Nadim Ahmed
June 8, 2013 7:27 pm

Pakistan must mine and electronic fence the Pak Afg border, this is the only way to bring peace inside Pakistan. Only militants would have to face the mined areas as ordinary civilians can cross through controlled checkpoints.

I dont know why Pakistan is so afraid to defend itself, we look around for permission from our enemies, other nations like India, Israel, France, USA have gone ahead with major fencing, building walls and other electronic fencing techniques, the South Koreans have laid (with US help) mines all along the DMZ

Ahsan Raza
June 8, 2013 8:03 pm

this war is confusing. so many groups fighting each other.

muzammil ullah khan
June 8, 2013 8:42 pm

These damned Lashkars with different Islamic names are playing havoc with the lives of peace loving people and are bringing a very bad name to Islam . These Lashkars need to be eliminated . A combined effort by Pakistan and US Armies is the answer to the problem .

Ahmer
June 8, 2013 9:42 pm

An ideal opportunity for the Army to join in and eliminate this TTP menace forever.

M. Siddique
June 8, 2013 9:46 pm

Let them finish each other off then Pakistan army can do the clean up job. It will be good ridden.

Aftab Kenneth Wilson
June 8, 2013 10:15 pm

It is better to wipe out all these Lashkars who are using the word Islam. This is only fight of conflict interests and as such nothing to do with religion.

Tahir
June 9, 2013 12:36 am

This is wonderful news. Kill as many of each other as you can. The country thanks you.

Mustafa
June 9, 2013 2:43 am

It is time America and Pakistan should do something drastic to make the lawless areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan impossible to survive thus protecting the future generations of Afghanistan and Pakistan from cold blooded slaughter by militants and terrorists. Both America and Pakistan have the arsenal to do this.

m a ahmad
June 9, 2013 12:30 pm

Good news. Let the two Taliban groups - Aghan and Pakistani - kill each other in thousands and make Pakistan a safer place. Go ahead, start the battles.

edwardian
June 9, 2013 2:44 pm

@Ahmer: Enemy's enemy is your friend. Do you want the rival militia to unite and fight the Army together. Sometimes one has to watch and win.

Riaz Ahmad
June 9, 2013 3:36 pm

@ksks: A preferable scenario, the longer they keep on fighting, the better the state of Pakistan. If and when there is a winner, he will be in a weakened state, war weary and at a lower numerical strength, either he surrenders to the state and constitution of Pakistan or face the Pak army.

mausin
June 9, 2013 5:11 pm

let them all kill each other as long as innocent families don't die

janan
June 9, 2013 5:41 pm

@ksks: this was the same thinking back when afghans kills afghans and we inter fer in our neighboring country internal affairs. Now you see Pakistan is burning from karachi to Khyber closing eyes is not the solution to the problems perhaps this attitude creates more problem in long run.

Tariq Mehsud
June 9, 2013 8:30 pm

TTP is a bunch of blackmailers/terrorists/illiterates.

Pakistani
June 9, 2013 10:38 pm

TTP is Pakistan's enemy not Afghan Taliban. So lets hope and Pray that Afghan Taliban whips them out... Apna dushman jaan ke giyo...

Asim Iqbal
June 9, 2013 10:52 pm

Lets hope and pray that Afghan Taliban whips TTP out. TTP is the enemy of Pakistan, not Afghan Taliban... Apna dushman jaan ke jiyo...

oriental philosopher
June 10, 2013 12:45 am

ttp are iron age ideologists..

Afrem
June 10, 2013 3:39 am

Did the militants in the pic borrow the scarves from their wives? One thing I cannot understand. If they are so brave, then why are they covering their faces? That is why I say...NO to hijab!!!

abdul w qureshi
June 10, 2013 7:19 am

I think Pakistan army can handle the fata problem andborder security . IT is is the democraand intelectual tic government in all the provinces which cannot solve the law and order situation in the big cities from where the militant get financing . the sind government is the problem and if it cannot solve the Karachi problem the army will give the federal government 6 -12 monthand ultimately the federal government will have to impose the government rule when zardari lives for good . the money is coming from the big cities and you have to cut down financing of these militant group . Is government watching ngo of different catogary and the religious organization . Is the a think tank of the elite of Pakistanto find the strategy to solve the problem

pradip
June 10, 2013 9:35 am

@mausin: Sir, In a war/battle innocents shares the most casualties.

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