The Security Brief

Vol. 6-Issue No 47

01st February, 2021

Editorial

Aviation Amelioration

COVID pandemic has badly hit the aviation industry across the world. In October 2020, the number of flights worldwide decreased by 46.4 percent in comparison with the same month in 2019. In some countries the decline in the number of passenger flights reached over 90 percent, for instance, reaching 98 percent decline in Italy. PIA, the national carrier of Pakistan, had already suffered losses of more than $4 billion before the flights were grounded last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

PIA, with the slogan, ‘great people to fly with’ was considered one of the best airlines in the region. It helped raise many airlines including the ‘Emirates’ which is now one of the world’s best airlines. Conversely, there is sharp decline in PIA’s performance. Among other reasons of the regression of PIA, the major one is overstaffing which has caused its inefficiency.  According to an information PIA has over 700 employees per aircraft, much higher than other international airlines including Air India. Sadly, this over-staffing was the result of unmindful carelessness of the political parties that kept giving jobs to their workers and supporters here.

Though PIA has been suffering severe set-backs for the last one decade, its decline had started much earlier. It fell into the quagmire of acute crisis and suffered huge losses caused by criminal inefficiency of all the concerned quarters. Recently, it has experienced all-time lows due to our own follies and slip-shod policies. The most glaring of all the follies was Minister Aviation’s indiscreet statement about 262 pilots’ dubious licenses which prompted a number of countries to ban PIA from operating flights in their jurisdictions. The European Union Air Safety Agency (EASA) suspended the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) to operate in Europe for six months and the ban is still in place. To add insult to injury the UN has warned its staff to avoid travel by any Pakistan-registered airline, including the national flag carrier, because of concerns over the allegedly dubious flying licenses of its pilots.

Very recently a PIA plane, Boeing 777, has been held back by Malaysian authorities due to a British court case over the jet’s lease. The case involved a $14 million lease dispute, a PIA official said. Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad, the country’s airport operator, and its subsidiary were ordered by the Kuala Lumpur High Court to make sure the aircraft did not leave Kuala Lumpur International Airport. It is another blow to the prestige of PIA.

Earlier, a domestic PIA flight crash in Karachi killed 97 of 99 people on board in May 2020. It could happen to any airline but with persistent streak of decline and set-backs, it was also considered a stark incident of pilot’s inefficiency, linking it with dubious licenses’ issue.

The question arises whether any serious strategy has been devised to pull PIA out of the abyss of bad performance and tarnished reputation any time soon. Some pessimists question that when all other services like Railways are performing poorly, how the airline would start performing better? Nevertheless, many quarters are optimistic that PIA can regain its past glory. The starting point should be to do something about the ban imposed by the European Union Air Safety Agency.

  NATIONAL

TERRORISM/SECTARIANISM- AT A GLANCE

Sindh

Sr. NoIncidentKilledInjuredArrested
1.Unidentified terrorists attacked Khirthar water installations and damaged by fire on two 400-KV transformers   near Jehan Shah Bridge in Sukkur. They also held the watchman on duty at the site under hostage, manhandled him and took away his motorcycle and cell phone. The attack caused suspension of power supply to the area and disruption in water supply to a filtration plant near Haji Lakha Mir Khan Brohi village (21st January).01
2.Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) and a Federal security agency in a joint operation arrested a suspected sectarian terrorist identified as Abbas Jafri from Khuda Ki Basti, Sarjani town Karachi (27th January).  
3.Police reportedly arrested two suspected terrorists Hazrat Bilal and Sadiq Ullah, associated with TTP, from Qayyumabad, Karachi and recovered three pistols from their possession (28th January).     02

Comments & Analysis: – The sabotage of water and electricity installations  is indicative of new strategy of terrorists. This type of sabotage is a part of low intensity guerilla activities involving “hit and run” to disrupt the communications in the target area. The possibility of involvement of defunct Sindhu Desh separatist organization and nationalists cannot be ruled out. The situation requires to track down the culprits as soon as possible and smash their network.

It is learnt Abbas Jafri was associated with militant outfit ‘ Zainabiyuoun Brigade’ and is a close aide of the most wanted militant Yawar Abbas whose name was included in the Government’s Redbook. He reportedly received training from a neighbouring country in 2014 and was involved in completing reconnaisance for the militants to carry out terrorist activities in Karachi. It is further learnt that “Zainabiyuoun Brigade” is consisted of Pakistani nationals while “Fatimiyiod Brigade” consisted of Afghan nationals. The two militant brigades remained engaged for protection of Holy Shrines and fought against the terrorists group ISIS in favour of President Bashar Al Assad Government’s in Syria.

It is learnt through police sources that the two TTP terrorists arrested from Karachi were involved in smuggling of chemicals including “Acetic Anhydride” used in making bombs and explosive material from Afghanistan. They were also wanted by police, customs departments and ANF from other Provinces.          

KPK

Sr. NoIncidentKilledInjuredArrested
1.The security forces and police in a joint operation, reportedly recovered heavy cache of ammunition allegedly dumped by the banned outfit Lashkar-e-Islam in Yousaf Talab and Wazirabad area in Bara tehsil of Khyber Tribal district. It includes 40mm 137 rockets, 75mm 27RR rounds, 81 mm 24 mortar shells, 3ft Russian missile, mortar shells and cartridges (20th January).
2.Two security personnel, Sepoy Khalid and  Sepoy Ayaz were killed and another injured by unidentified armed motorcyclists in the jurisdiction of Final Police Station of Tank district. They were deputed for protection of a road site (20th January).0201
3.The security forces killed two terrorists associated with TTP in Qaddafi area of Utmankhel tehsil of Bajaur tribal district (20th January).02
4.A terrorist Commander identified as Said Rahim allies Abid was killed during an intelligence-based operation carried out by security forces in Mossaqi village in Mir Ali tehsil of North Waziristan tribal District (23rd January).  01
5.Five terrorists including Syed Rahim Abid (AKK group of ETP), Saifullah Noor (Gular Group of TTP) were killed during intelligence-based operations in Mir Ali tehsil of North Waziristan tribal District (24rd January).   05
6.A Special Branch official Ziatullah was killed by unidentified gunmen while he was checking a hotel’s guest record in Dabgari area, Peshawar (20th January).01
7.Police arrested three persons namely Muhammad Akaleem Husnain, Inayat Ali and Muhammad Sajid in-connection with their involvement in making fake cards of the Pakistan army, Levies, police and other departments from Masood market, Fort Iqbal Gar road, Dera Ismail Khan (24th January).        03
8.Unidentified gunmen after killing an   elder (Malik) Gullah Khan belonging to South Waziristan burnt his body on the bypass road in the jurisdiction of University police station Dera Ismail Khan (24th January).01
9.One Mullah Abdul Samad Toor reportedly Afghan Taliban Commander belonged to Sarobi area near Kabul was allegedly killed by his rival Mullah Musa and others, recently in Tarnab, near Peshawar. Investigations are under progress to verify the motive behind the murder and arrest of the culprits (25th January). 01
1.A volleyball player Salahuddin was shot dead by unidentified persons in Tarkho area, Mamond tehsil of Bajaur tribal District (27th January).01
12.Two rikshaw drivers were shot dead by unidentified gunmen in a similar pattern in Bahadur Kot and Ghebi Swar area in Kohat city (27th January).02
13.The bomb disposal squad defused 1kg time bomb planted in Toor Baba Masjid by unidentified terrorists in Gari Ata Muhammad area of Peshawar city (27th January).

Comments & Analysis: – The anti-terrorist drive by the security forces is continued in various tribal districts of KP. It is learnt that the killed terrorist Saifullah Noor was directly involve in 17 attacks on security forces with IEDs. Whereas TTP Commander Syed Rahim Abid was incharge of two suicide launching centres in Mir Ali and Wana including murders of four elders (Maliks) and three employees of engineering company in North Waziristan tribal District.

A briefing given to the IGP, KP Sanaullah Abbasi during his visit to the CTD headquarters on 21st January, contained that Rs.588 million would be spent on buying security and intelligence equipments including jammer-fitted vehicles, GSM locators, thermal binoculars, aerial surveillance drones and communication tools, for use in the merged tribal districts of ex-FATA. To revamp CTD network in the Province, Rs150 million worth equipment has been purchased which had played a pivotal role in promoting latest intelligence-based policing and combating terrorism in the area. To enhance the CTD strength, 715 new vacancies were sanctioned for which rules had been framed and sent to the government for approval.

Balochistan

Sr. NoIncidentKilledInjuredArrested
1.A mutilated body of a missing youth identified as Allah Dad r/o Kalag-Mindo was found by Levies Force, near the Sorn area of Chagai District. Investigations are underway to determine the reason of his death (19th January).01
2.Two motorcyclists namely Muhammad Akhtar and Abdul Sattar were shot dead by unidentified armed persons near Kach Bridge in Nasirabad District (19th January).02
3. Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) recovered heavy cache of arms and ammunition including 08 mortars, two fuses and explosive material from suspected hide outs of the terrorists from Sangan area of Sibi District (20th January).
4.CTD and Kalat police arrested a suspected terrorist Mir Muhammad and recovered 01 AK-47 and 02 TT pistols and a telescope from his possession in Girani area of Kalat District (22nd January).01
5.Two FC soldiers-Lance Naik Qismat Ullah and Shareef Ullah were injured in a grenade attack hurled on them by unidentified terrorist in Sangani area of Turbat town in Kech District (23rd January).02
6.The dead body of a student of Turbat University-Asad Muneer, belonging to Tusp area of Panjgur District was recovered from a dam by the Levies. He had gone for picnic along with his friends but did not return home. A bullet was found in his body (26th January).   01
7.A former militant leader of a banned outfit Mirza son of Bakhtiar Khan was shot dead by unidentified persons in Gaddagi village, Balgater area of Kech District. The deceased had recently surrendered to the security forces after abandoning his armed struggle against the Government (26th January)01
8.CTD on a tip-off recovered ten hand grenades from two persons travelling by a passenger van going to Khuzdar from Quetta (27th January).  

Comments & Analysis: – The terrorist activities and target killings by the banned militant organizations continued whereas the security agencies remained in their pursuit. Recovery of arms and ammunitions confirms the nefarious designs of the terrorists and insurgents.

To counter multiple threats against the security CPEC projects in Gwadar, the Chinese Government is supporting police for capacity building. The Council Gen. at Karachi Li Bijan addressing a ceremony held in the port city of Gwadar on 28th January handed over 40 motorcycles, 10 laptops and 10 security cabinets to police for check post officials. He said that his country will continue providing equipment, training facilities and help for increasing the capabilities of police force in Gwadar.

Government should have an officially articulated counter terrorism strategy, including the provision for ‘hearts and minds approach’ and negotiations should never be off the table.

DEFENCE/NATIONAL SECURITY

Pakistan conducts test of Shaheen-III missile

Shaheen III surface-to-surface ballistic missile

Pakistan conducted successful flight test of Shaheen-III surface to surface ballistic missile having range of 2750 kilometres with impact point in the Arabian sea. It was witnessed by CJCSC Gen, DG SDPD Lt Gen. Nadeem Zaki Manj, Comd SFC Lt Gen. Muhammad Ali, Chairman NESCOM Dr. Raza Samar and the scientists and engineers (20th January).

Comments & Analysis: – Shaheen II is a good antidote to the Indian Agni missiles. No doubt it is India centric and can target its cities and bases. It has the capacity to hit any target in the whole territory of India and even beyond. President, Prime Minister of Pakistan and the Services Chiefs congratulated the scientists and engineers on successful conduct of the missile test.

Naval chief visits Saudi Arabia, meets armed forces’ heads

Pakistan Navy Chief Admiral Muhammad Amjad Khan Niazi paid an official visit to Saudi Arabia. On reaching Saudi Arabian Naval HQrs, he was received by Commander Royal Saudi Naval Forces Vice Admiral Fahad bin Abdullah Al Ghofaily and given briefing on the setup and ongoing operations besides seeing Command and Control Centre. Later, he called on Chief of General Staff General Fayyad bin Hamid Al Ruwaili and discussed the interactions, matters of mutual interest and bilateral defence ties (22nd January).

Comments & Analysis: – Both the chiefs acknowledged the need for closer naval defence ties to deter and counter the emerging threats from various quarters. Saudi Chief of General Staff General also appreciated the contributions of Pakistan in spearheading various initiatives for maintaining peace and stability in the region and role of Pakistan Navy in training and capacity building of RSNF.

Erdogan launches welding of 3rd Milgem warship for Pakistan Navy

Turk President Tayyip Erdogan during a ceremony, launched the welding of 3rd warship of Milgem class and Ist class Turkish Naval frigate “Istanbul” for Pakistan Navy, to be constructed in Turkey. Pakistan’s Ambassador in Turkey, Minister of National Defence, Chief of Turkish General Staff and Commander of Turkish Naval Staff Admiral Adnan Ozbal were also present there (23rd January).

Comments & Analysis: – It was the third out of four Milgem Ada-class corvettes for Pakistan Navy in Istanbul. The contract for four Milgem class corvettes for Pakistan Navy with concurrent Transfer of Technology (ToT) was signed in 2018. Milgem vessels are 99 meters long with a displacement capacity of 2,400 tones and can move at a speed of 29 nautical miles.

These anti-submarine combat frigates, which can be hidden from the radar, will further enhance the defence capability of the Pakistan Navy.

China launches 2nd advanced naval missile Frigate for Pakistan

The second advanced warship- a Type-054 Class Frigate- has been launched by China for Pakistan Navy. The launching ceremony was held at the Hudong Zhonghua Shipyard, Shanghai. It is the country’s most advanced futuristic warship equipped with long range missiles and ultra modern radar system, significantly revamping its maritime defence deterrence system. (Jan.30)

Comment & Analysis:  Pakistan Navy contracted the construction of four types of 054A/P Frigates with China in 2017. The first frigate was launched in August last year.It would greatly help create balance of power in the region which India is trying to destabilise.

COURT HEARINGS/DECISION

FC soldier sentenced to death for killing student in Turbat

Hayat Baloch

Turbat’s District and Sessions Court after completion of trial of murder case, awarded death sentence to the accused ex-FC Sepoy Shadiullah in-connection with killing of a student Hayat Baloch. His murder was widely condemned all over the country (20th January).

Comments & Analysis: – Hayat Mirza Baloch was killed in the Absar area of Turbat city of Kech district on August 13 last year in front of his parents while working with them in a date orchard. It is learnt that three FC men were injured after an IED went-off while they were patrolling in their official vehicle in Turbat. Later, the security forces launched a search operation in the area and during which the FC Sepoy Shadiullah caught Hayat Baloch and killed the innocent student after tying his hands to his back. After knowing the factual position and conducting inquiry, the then IG Frontier Corps (South), Maj Gen. Sarfaraz Ali handed over the accused FC man to police for legal proceedings. During the investigations, he confessed to his crime.  

Uzair Baloch acquitted in fourth criminal case

The ATC-VII Karachi, exonerated the accused Lyari gang leader Uzair Baloch and Ameen Buledi due to failure of the prosecution to prove charges against them in a case related to attack on a police party with intention to kill them in Baghdadi area of Karachi in April 2012 (20th January).

Comments & Analysis: – This is the fourth criminal case in which the anti-terrorism court acquitted the Lyari gang leader in the recent weeks due to insufficient evidences against the accused persons by the prosecution. However, the court kept the case against six absconding suspects on dormant file till their arrest or surrender. The court issued perpetual warrants for their arrest. The defunct PAC chief Uzair Baloch faces over 50 criminal cases pending before different sessions and anti-terrorism courts.

Supreme Court dismisses the appeal against the acquittal of Umer Saeed Sh.

Ahmad Umer Saeed Sheikh

The Supreme Court ordered release of Ahmad Umer Saeed Sheikh the principal accused in the killing of US journalist Daniel Pearl in 2002, dismissing petition against his release and acquittal by the Sindh High Court (28th January). 

Comments & Analysis: – The Sindh Government has reportedly decided to seek a review of Supreme Court decisions. According to some legal experts the case had been flawed from its early stages and the prosecution couldnt provide sufficient evidence against the accused. Added that a review against the judgement would be conducted by the same court (Supreme Court) as per laid down judicial procedure in Pakistan.

The western media bitterly criticised the Court decision. The US Secretary of state Antony Blinken called the decision “an affront to terrorism victims everywhere, including in Pakistan” he noted to Pakistan’s planes to launch a review petition against the said judgement in the Supreme Court and said that Washington was also prepared to prosecute Ahmad Umer Saeed Sheikh in the United States.                       

OP-ED

India’s Anti-Muslim Onslaught

by Dr.Saeed Elahi

Under Narendra Modi, India is fast turning into a hell for the Muslims, especially for those belonging to the lower strata. Secular India is a story of the past. Now the bigoted segments of Hindus, led by Modi and BJP, are bent upon avenging the perceived humiliation of centuries long Muslim rule in India. Narendra Modi started this trend with the carnage of Muslims in Gujrat in 2002 when he was the Chief Minister of Gujrat. More than 1,000 people were killed in the violence orchestrated and perpetrated under his aegis.

A senior police officer in the Gujarat Intelligence Bureau Sanjiv Bhatt stated in the supreme court that he attended a meeting at which Mr Modi was alleged to have said that the Hindus should be allowed to vent their anger.The renowned author and human rights activist, Arandhuti Roy explained the horrific details of that genocide on videos and at important forums. Unfortunately, Modi got away with it and is now ruling India.

Gujrat carnage was the first serious hit not only at the secular stance of India but at its solidarity too. After Modi and his BJP government came into power, they started systematic and persistent efforts to target Muslims of India. First they gave vent to their grudge by changing the names of the cities and places, like Mustafabad to Saraswati Nagar and Amin to Abhimanyupur in Haryana, Gulbarga to Kalaburgi in Karanataka, Mominabad to Ambajogai in Marahstara, Allahabad to Prayagra, Faizabad District to Ayodhya District, Muzaffarnagar to Lakshminagar, in Uttarpardesh, and many other places.

Secondly, the extremist Hindus, affiliated with BJP and RSS ideology, started lynching Muslims on concocted reasons. In 2019-20, there has been a series of violent attacks on  Muslims, often accused their victims of smuggling beef. Videos of these mob lynching and beatings went viral on social media. But for the most part, the attackers were not punished.

Recently a video statement of an Indian Muslim journalist, Saba Naqvi,  has gone viral in which she has revealed that Muslim vegetable sellers are being stopped from doing their business on religious grounds in some parts of India. She also revealed that in Gujrat covid patients are also being segregated for being Muslims. She being a Muslim expressed her anxiety and helplessness on this inhuman treatment being meted out to the Muslims of India who are the citizens of that country. She tried to quote examples of great contribution of Muslims for the citizens of India irrespective of their class, creed and religion. Her jeremiad was a cry of helplessness.

The myopic anti-Muslim fascist policies of BJP, led by Modi, have already created deep resentment among the Muslims across India. More than 200 million India are being subjected to systematic discrimination, prejudice, and violence, despite constitutional protections. India is already internationally stigmatized due to its  oppression and injustices against the Muslims in the  Indian Held Kashmir and against the Sikhs in the East Punjab (Khalistan). Now the planned and persistent violence against the Muslim across India is the beginning of  dissensions within the society which have the potential to strike at the very foundations of the country. It is high time that saner elements within the Indian government pay heed to the voice raised by Saba Naqvi and stop injustices and atrocities against the Muslims of India.

FOREIGN RELATIONS

Pakistan urges Biden to stick to US-Taliban deal     

US President Joe Biden

Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi talking to media said that his country has hopes for greater engagement with the new United States government and called on the new US President, Joe Biden to follow up on the ongoing Afghan peace process and the US troops withdrawal from the country (21st January).

Comments & Analysis: – The reports are encouraging in this regard as Joe Biden has reportedly directed to continue the policy of withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Intra-Afghan talks rare opportunity for peace-Foreign Minister

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi during his telephonic discussion with his Afghan counterpart, Hanif Atmar said that Pakistan considers intra-Afghan talks a rare and historic opportunity for comprehensive and lasting solution to bring peace in Afghanistan and stability in the region (24th January).

Comments & Analysis: – Pakistan despite suffering heavy burden of three million Afghan refugees and their adverse impact on the socio-economic fabric is moving forward with providing every support including food, medical, transit facilities, and even establishment of border markets for stronger bilateral trade with Afghanistan. The government is also reportedly considering to formally export surplus wheat to Afghanistan to discourage smuggling and generate revenue.

It is the first high level contact between Pakistan and Afghanistan after the new US administration has held the reins in Washington and  indicated reviewing the intra-Afghan dialogue deal with Taliban. Pakistan has always stressed on political settlement instead of military solution in Afghanistan.

NATIONAL

Activist Karima Baloch laid to rest in Tump

Karima Baloch

The dead body of the nationalist students leader- BSO (Azad) Ms. Karima Baloch was flown to Pakistan on 23rd January from Canada and handed over to the family at Hub. Later it was buried in the graveyard of her native town Tump in Kech district. A large number of political leaders, workers, and members of civil society attended the funeral prayer (25th January).

Comments & Analysis: – Ms. Karima Baloch was found dead mysteriously in the Canadian city of Toronto on where she had taken political asylum in 2015. The Canadian police after a preliminary investigation declared that no criminal act could be found behind her death. Relatives of the activist and political parties accused the district administration of blocking roads linking Tump with the rest of Makran division to deter people from attending Karima Baloch’s last rites. A shutdown was observed in Turbat district and other areas of Makran to mourn her death.

CRIME/LAW & ORDER

  1. Police reportedly arrested two suspects who had allegedly kidnapped a businessman and released him after Rs/- 400,000 from his family and ransom money, from Korangi Karachi (19th January).
  2. One doctor Ashok Kumar and his dispenser Saddam Hussain were arrested on the charge of poisoning to death an MBBS student namely Sana Arain, owing to failure of love affairs with her in the jurisdiction of PS Bhan Syedabad, Dadu District (19th January).
  3. A salon owner Ijaz was killed another injured after an attempt of robbery by the two-armed motorcyclist on a Allama Iqbal road Lahore (19th January).      
  4. Two persons-Usman and Jahanzeb were shot dead by their rivals when they were on their way to home on Warsak road after appearing in the court in Peshawar (20th January).
  5. A gangster Nadir Lashari was killed while four accompliances manage to escape during an encounter in the jurisdiction of PS Vehar, Larkana District (20th January).
  6. Two persons namely Syed Alam and Awal Khan along with three passersby were killed in an attack by their rivals in Baghban locality in Lakki Marwat city, KPK (20th January).
  7. A local journalist Ghulam Rasool was killed by his rivals on Halla road, Pattoki, Kasur District, Punjab (23rd January). 
  8. The police recovered a 17-years-old girl and arrested a man who abducted and raped her by promising her a job, from Chak village 333, Bahawalnagar District, Punjab (23rd January).
  9. Police arrested four constables of Punjab highway patrol for allegedly causing the death of a citizen namely Muhammad Azhar while he was riding on a bike near bypass road chowk, Toba Tek Singh District (23rd January).
  10. Police stopped marriage of 13-years old girl (underage) K. Jatoi with the 40 years old prospective bride groom Liaqat Otho and arrested the girl’s father Mehboob Jatoi from a house in the jurisdiction of PS B-section, Dadu city (24th January).
  11. Seventeen cartons containing cellular phone scratch cards worth around Rs/- 45 million, which were allegedly stolen from the company’s port Qasim, Karachi warehouse, were recovered in a raid by police from Ghulam Panhwar village of Dadu District. One suspected person Asad Chandio was arrested while the raids were being conducted to arrest the remaining two suspects (26th January).
  12. One Shakeel Ahmad was shot dead by unidentified motorcyclist on Ferozpur road in Kahna area of Lahore, Punjab (26th January).
  13. One Alam was arrested on the charge of kidnapping three children of his rival family in Dandai area, Bisham tehsil of Shangla District, KPK (26th January).
  14. One Ijaz was shot dead on Raiwand road near Jia Bagga, Lahore, Punjab, on an old enmity. Hundreds of peoples protested and demanded arrest of the killers of the deceased (27th January).    

Crime Details 21/01/2020 to 29/01/2021

CrimesPunjabKPKSindhBalochistanIslamabadAJ&K
Murders(Multan-2, Taxila-3, Gujranwala-3, Lahore-5, Muzaffargarh-2, Kasur-1, Lahore-3, Nawab Town-2, Khariyan-1, Faisalabad-2, Choong-1, Lahore-3, Rawalpindi-2, Toba Tek Singh-1, Lahore-1, Lahore-2, Shahdara-1, Shahdara-1, Kahna-2, Sheikhupur-6, Rawalpindi-1, Lahore-1) = 45(North Waziristan-1, Charsadda-2, South Waziristan-5, Mardan-1, Bajaur-2, Karak-2, Kohat-2) = 15(Karachi-1, Naushahro Feroze-2, Karachi-1, Karachi-1, Larkana-2, Karachi-1, Naushahro Feroze-1, Shikarpur-2, Dadu-3) = 14(Quetta-3, Gwadar-1, Quetta-1) = 05(Islamabad-1) = 01(Muzaffarabad-8, Muzaffarabad-3) = 11
Gang rape(Bahawalnagar-1, Lahore-1, Taxila-1) = 03 
Robberies/ Dacoits(Khyber-1, Khariyan-1, Muslim town-1, Shalimar-1, Samnabad-1, Gujjar Pura-1, Lahore-1, Shahdara-1, Model town-1) = 09
Kidnapping(Sahiwal-1. Taxila-1) = 02(Karachi-15) = 15
Police encounter(Lodhran-1, Sheikhupura-2) = 03
Injured(Taxila-4, Lahore-2, Choong-2, Toba Tek Singh-1, Lahore-2, Nishtar Colony-1, Lahore-1, Sheikhupur-2) = 15(Mardan-1, Bajaur-2, Karak-2) = 05(Naushahro Feroze-4, Larkana-2, Karachi-1, Shikarpur-2, Dadu-1) = 10(Gwadar-2) = 02(Islamabad-1) = 01(Muzaffarabad-6) = 06
Total Crime752039070217

Source: Media & National dailies  

REGIONAL

LoC/IHK

The situation remained calm with continued deployment of Pakistani and Indian troops on the forward posts along LOC.

 However, inside the Indian Held Kashmir, Indian security forces continued their fake anti militancy drive to crush the freedom movement of Kashmiri people. During the same an Indian army soldier was killed and three other wounded after grenade attacks by the militants in Kulgam Districts while in another incident three soldiers were wounded in Anantnag District. (26th & 27th January).

Kashmiris on both sides of the Line of Control (LOC) and the world over observed India’s 72-Republic Day as “Black Day”.

Comments & Analysis: – A complete strike and shutdown was observed in IHK, and Azad Kashmir on the appeal of Hurriyat Conference and other organisations to reject the Indian occupation. As a mark of their love and affection, Pakistan national flag was also reportedly displayed on the grand mosque of Srinagar by unidentified persons despite strict security supported by surveillance drones in Srinagar and other places in the valley. In addition to that protest rallies were taken out and seminars were organised globally to draw the world attention toward their struggle for self-determination.

LAC/INDO-CHINA BORDER

Ladakh standoff: Indian and Chinese armies hold over 11-hour-long military talks

A brawl and minor face-off took place between the Indian and Chinese troops at Niku La in the Eastern Sikkim during a patrol on 20th January, resulting in injuries to 04 Indian soldiers while the losses of the Chinese side was not known. The same was however, resolved by the local military commanders after their intervention as per established protocol.

After a gap of over two-and-half months, the ninth round of the senior military Commanders level talks was held between India and China for over 16 hours at Moldo border point on the Chinese side along the LAC. Indian Ministry of External Affairs said that the meeting was constructive and helped build mutual trust to refrain from aggression from either side and move forward for disengagement of troops in Ladakh. The Indian side was represented by Commander 14-Corps, Lt Gen. PGK Menon, (24th January).

Comments & Analysis: – The Niku La pass is connected to Sikkim border with Tibet. The Indian army played down the incident by terming it as a minor brawl. With regard to the military talks to resolve the issue of dis-engagement in Ladakh, the people familiar with the negotiations are of the opinion that India insisted that the onus is on China to carry forward the process of disengagement and de-escalation at the friction points in the region. India has been maintaining that the disengagement process has to start simultaneously at all the friction points and no selective approach was acceptable to it. The eighth and last round of the talks had taken place on 06 November during which both sides broadly discussed disengagement of troops from specific friction points.

AFGHANISTAN

Terrorism/Violence

  1. More than forty Afghan security forces personnel were killed during clashes with Taliban over 24 hours in Kunduz, Baghlan and Nimruz Provinces (19th January).
  2. Six police personnel were wounded due to an IED blast near an outpost in Herat Province. In another incident three Afghan security forces personnel were killed and two others wounded in an attack by the unidentified gunmen in the said Province, on the same day (19th January).
  3. Afghan security authorities claim to have killed 129 Taliban during their clashes with the security forces within 24 hours in Nangarhar, Wardak, Zabul, Faryab, Badakhshan, Kunduz, Badghis, Uruzgan, Kandahar and Helmand Provinces. During the same, reportedly 23 IEDs were also defused by the security forces (20th January). 
  4. During an operation conducted by the Afghan Special Forces (commandos) reportedly, twenty-seven peoples including a former soldier were freed from a Taliban prison in Nahri Siraj District of Helmand Province (20th January).
  5. After clashes with Afghan security forces, five villages have fallen to Taliban in Orgu District of Badakhshan Province (20th January).
  6. Eight security forces personnel were killed during their clashes with Taliban in Baghlan and Nimruz Provinces (21st January).
  7. Head of the Central Bank’s dispute resolution department-Abdullah Durrani and his driver were wounded and his bodyguard was killed after an IED attack on his vehicle Kabul city (24th January).
  8. Afghanistan Ministry of Defence claim to have killed 38 Taliban during their clashes with Afghan security forces supported by the air force within 24 hours in Arghandab District of Kandahar Province. A bus was subjected to IED attack on Kandahar-Herat Highway killing two passengers and injuring ten others (24th and 25th January).
  9. Afghan security forces reportedly destroyed a Taliban weapon depot in the outskirt of Nahr-e-Saraj District of Helmand Province. In another incident Ustad Wali Muhammad an instructor of Police Academy was shot dead by unidentified motorcyclist in the Helmand city (25th January).
  10. Afghan NDS arrested two suspected IS/ISKP militants from their hideout in Achin District of Nangarhar Province (26th January).
  11. Two police personnel were killed and four others wounded in an IED attack on their vehicle in Kabul city (27th January).
  12. An armoured vehicle of the Italian embassy carrying its Afghan employees hit an IED in Kabul city but all remained safe (25th January

Comments & Analysis: – Taliban-Afghan security forces clash, target killings, IED attacks and violence continued in Afghanistan during the period under review. A report released by the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) on 27th January contains that total of 2,250 peoples were killed or injured in targeted assassination attacks in 2020 whereas 1,078 were killed and 1,172 injured in 2019, showing increase in the rate of violence and casualties.

 Amrullah Saleh’s idea to execute arrested criminals

First Vice President Amrullah Saleh, commenting on the rise of killings in Kabul, said those criminals who were arrested and found guilty should be executed. in sharp reaction to said statement, the Taliban spokesperson warned that if any of their members are executed by the Afghan government, they will retaliate (20th January).   

Comments & Analysis: – Taliban are of the view that their prisoners who were sentenced to death by the Afghan courts had been among the 5,000 prisoners already released and any mistreatment of their remaining prisoners would seriously damage the peace process.

Lashkar-i-Islam Chief Mangal Bagh killed in Afghanistan

Lashkar-i-Islam (LI Chief), Mangal Bagh along with three other terrorists were reportedly killed in an IED blast, planted outside his home, by unidentified persons in Achin District of Nangarhar Province (28th January).  

Comments & Analysis: – The slain readed terrorist leader hailed from Khyber tribal District who fled to Afghanistan along with several others activists of Lashkar-i-Islam and reportedly carried out terrorist activities in Pakistan. He demonstrated extremely ruthless cruel methods for public execution/killings of his opponents in Bara tehsil and Tira valley of Khyber tribal District in the past. The incident was confirmed by Governor Nangarhar Province Zia-ul-Haq Amar Khel through a tweet yet the official media of Afghanistan down-played the news.

Coronavirus Crisis Update

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Pakistan rose to 546,428 on 01st

February, 2021 (Monday) after new infections were confirmed in the country.

The Province-wise breakup of the total number of cases as of 01:00 pm,

February 01st is as follows:

• Sindh: 18,589

• Punjab: 10,060

• Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: 2,923

• Balochistan: 149

• Islamabad Capital Territory: 1,381

• Gilgit-Baltistan: 20

• AJK: 371

Deaths: 11,683

Comments & Analysis: – The second streak of COVID is still going strong. However, the number of Corona positive patients and deaths caused due to it has declined to some extent.   

Pakistan’s Security Barometer

Terrorism: TTP and its affiliates are trying to increase the terrorist activities. IS also showed its foot-prints in Balochistan. Low-intensity insurgency is continuing in ex-tribal areas and Balochistan.

Threat Level: High – The threat level is high due to national, international and regional security environment. The intelligence agencies must keep the guards up and take pro-active pre-emptive measures.

Level of Sectarianism & Religious Extremism: On the rise. Further aggravated by the killing of Hazaras in Balochistan. There is an urgent need to bridle the situation through all means.

Border Situation: Tense – However there was lull in the exchange of fire at LOC during the last two weeks. The Western border (Pak-Afghan), remained calm.

Health Security: A new surge of Coronavirus pandemic is still persisting in Pakistan. People are anxiously waiting for vaccine and summers that could bring some solace to the people.

Social Unrest: Rising; due to exorbitant price hike and political unrest. The constant rise in electricity and petrol tariffs has resulted in the price hike.

Note: The Security Brief is based on open source media reports

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