WASHINGTON: The US Department of State on Tuesday declared Qari Saifullah, a Quetta-based Taliban commander, a specially designated global terrorist.
Qari Saifullah is the Taliban’s shadow deputy governor and an operational commander in Afghanistan’s Zabul province, but the designation identifies him as a resident of Quetta.
The State Department reported that as an operational commander, Qari Saifullah has used Taliban fighters to organise terrorist activities against the government of Afghanistan and coalition forces in eastern Zabul province.
Qari Saifullah has also directly ordered his subordinates to conduct improvised explosive device attacks, small arms fire attacks, and rocket attacks in Zabul province against the government of Afghanistan.
According to the State Department, on Jan 14 last year, six Taliban insurgents subordinate to Qari Saifullah attacked a Romanian convoy in the vicinity of Abdul Haq Kalay village with rocket-propelled grenades.
On Sept 28, 2011, two suicide bombers under Qari Saifullah’s direction planned to attack the US-led provincial reconstruction teams in Qalat and Shajoy districts of Zabul.
On Nov 25, 2010, Qari Saifullah ordered a Taliban commander and Taliban shadow sub-governor of Atghar District, Zabul, to transport light weapons to Qalat City Centre in Zabul. The shipment included approximately 25 Kalashnikov rifles, 10 machine guns, five RPGs and 20 grenades. Suicide bombers planned to use these weapons against coalition forces and Afghan National Security Forces, specifically targeting the Second Afghan National Army Brigade and Police Headquarters.
The designation includes a prohibition against US persons engaging in transactions with Qari Saifullah, and the freezing of all property and interests of Qari Saifullah in the United States, or come within the United States or the possession or control of US persons.