|Talking about the largest city in Pakistan, Zafar says that Sindh police have apprehended three men belonging to the banned TTP, from different parts of Karachi city and seized ammunition in their possession. This arrest came a day after Asad Zaman, chief of the Karachi branch of TTP, was arrested with a large cache of arms, ammunition, and explosives, which included 75 kg of RDX that could have caused a massive amount of destruction in the metropolis. According to the police, the ongoing military operation in the tribal areas has caused many terrorists to move toward the urban areas of the country and to try to create a law an order situation. The security forces are on high alert all over the country and, with the educational institutions closed, it seems that the terrorists have completed half their job by creating panic among the local population.
Zafar speaks with Ahmed Chinoy, assistant chief of the CPLC (Citizen Police Liaison Committee), and discusses how Karachi has been safe from terrorists' attacks so far. Chinoy says the city police and their supporting agencies have been very active and successful in foiling major terrorist plots so far, and the credit for safeguarding the security of the citizens of Karachi largely goes to the police. Exclusive investigation units are specifically assigned to trace terrorists, while the investigation method used in Karachi is also more comprehensive and more effective than in other cities of Pakistan. Chinoy says the police and the intelligence agencies are aware of illegal immigrants settled in the suburbs of the city and a process of registering these people is underway, but until then, the police are making efforts not to allow these illegal immigrants to penetrate into the city.
Zafar says Afghanistan is inching towards an appropriate solution to its election scandal after presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah has agreed to participate in the 07 November run-off elections. Abdullah's decision came after incumbent President Hamid Karzai recognized the international pressure and agreed to a run-off as well. The UN-backed Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC) had found evidence of fraud and invalid ballets from thousands of polling stations; On the basis of these findings, the Afghanistan Independent Election Commission has determined that Karzai did not earn enough valid votes for a majority. The UN Special representative to Afghanistan has warned that the country's scheduled second-run presidential vote will not be perfect.
Zafar speaks with Noah Coburn, from the Afghan Research and Evaluation Unit (AREU), and discusses if fraud could be controlled for the run-off elections. Coburn expresses his doubts over a fair run-off election and says that in the south of Afghanistan, people are angry over taking votes away form President Karzai, but in the north the supporters of Abdullah are very happy about the second round of election. Mostly people are not sure if the run-off is going to improve anything and are concerned over the time and money spent on this process, while a grave threat hovers on the lives of those who will provide security to the candidates and people in the polling stations. In the earlier elections we also had the Provincial Council elections, in which the respective candidates were very active in bringing people out to the polling stations to vote, but this time around we expect less public participation. Abdullah's supporters are favoring the idea of a coalition government, but the majority feel that a coalition government will be weak and ineffective and would therefore like to see a strong president.
Reading brief straight reports, Zafar says World Food Program (WFP) has closed its distribution points in northwest Pakistan over security affairs; the affected areas include Swabi, Swat and Buner among others. However, reports suggest that the closure is temporary and that the decision would be reviewed later in the week.
[Description of Source: Karachi Dawn News in English -- Pakistan's first 24-hour English language TV channel owned by the Dawn Group of Newspapers.]
Pakistan: Afghan Taliban Say Obama's New Policy Will Not Help Resolve Confict
SAP20091203102012 Islamabad The News Online in English 03 Dec 09
[Report by staff correspondent: "Taliban reject Obama's new Afghan policy"]
[Text disseminated as received without OSC editorial intervention]
PESHAWAR: While reacting to US President Barack Obama's new strategy for Afghanistan, the Afghan Taliban said on Wednesday that it did not contain anything that could help resolve the Afghan conflict.
A statement issued by the Islamic Emirates in Pashto language to media organisations said: "The strategy shows that the wishes and demands of the American people, who are confronting serious financial problems, have not been kept in mind. Rather the strategy was formulated to protect the interests of the generals at the Pentagon and the capitalists.
"No sign towards solution to the Afghan issue could be seen in Obama's strategy. It is aimed at killing two birds with one stone -- to reduce Afghans' apathy to foreign forces and to counter criticism in the US and concern of their allies. However, it is of no use, as military casualties will also increase with the rise in the number of foreign troops in Afghanistan.
"In the history of Afghanistan, none was able to capture it with deceptions, resources and high number of troops, the statement added. Neither have we any base in Pakistan nor we needed such a base outside Afghanistan as we control a vast area in our own country.
Claims about the Taliban presence in Pakistan are aimed at diverting attention from the strong resistance that our fighters are offering in Afghanistan. We have no intention to harm anyone in the world, so the presence of foreign invaders in Afghanistan has no link to security of the world.
"Like the past, the Islamic Emirates is fully committed to fighting foreign allies' (the US and its allies) unjust, anti-Islamic and anti-Afghanistan conspiracies with long resistance, strong strategy and high morale. We firmly believe that Obama's strategy would fail like the past. We remind the US that it would itself disintegrate instead of capturing Afghanistan if it continued with its policy of aggression."
Mushtaq Yusufzai adds: Reacting to the announcement by the US that it would send additional 30,000 troops to Afghanistan, Taliban commander Sirajuddin Haqqani said on Wednesday that numerical strength would not save Americans from a "historic" defeat in Afghanistan.
"We knew Obama would not be different from his predecessor Bush when he was elected to the office. We also knew he would send more troops to Afghanistan but we have a strong belief that they would leave soon as America would not be able to sustain the losses at our hands," the Taliban commander claimed.
The US State Department has announced $5 million reward for information leading to the capture of Sirajuddin Haqqani alias Khaleefa, who is head of the so-called Taliban group Haqqani Network, established by his father Maulvi Jalaluddin Haqqani.
The Taliban Shura had held an important meeting that was chaired by their supreme leader Mullah Omar, which decided not to halt fighting during the winter.
"Gone are the days when we were living in the mountains and could not fight in winter. Now with the support of the Afghan people, we live in major cities and towns and operate very easily," Sirajuddin claimed.
[Description of Source: Islamabad The News Online in English -- Website of a widely read, influential English daily, member of the Jang publishing group. Neutral editorial policy, good coverage of domestic and international issues. Usually offers leading news and analysis on issues related to war against terrorism. Circulation estimated at 55,000; URL: http://www.thenews.com.pk/]
Taliban Kabul Front Commander Jalili Interviewed by Al-Jazirah, Promises Attacks
GMP20091204648001 Doha Al-Jazirah Satellite Channel Television in Arabic 1426 GMT 04 Dec 09
["Today's Encounter" feature: Interview with Saifullah Jalali, commander of the Kabul Front for the Afghan Taliban movement, conducted by Al-Jazirah correspondent Ahmad Zaydan, Jalali's face is rendered opaque by a filter so that it will be unidentifiable; place not given, indoors -- live or recorded /// Zaydan asks his questions in Arabic and Jalili answers in Pashto, with a voice-over ranslation into Arabic.]
[Ahmad Zaydan, speaking in Arabic] Honorable viewers, welcome to "Today's Encounter" in which we host the commander Saifullah Jalali, commander of the Kabul Front for the Afghan Taliban movement.
Welcome to "Today's Encounter" on Al-Jazirah Channel. My first question is about the military situation in Kabul: What is it like? What is the plan of the Afghan Taliban movement for the province of Kabul in the future?
[Saifullah Jalali, the picture of his face made opaque by a filter to prevent identification (but his beard and profile can be distinguished in close-up); speaking in Pashto with a voice-over translation into Arabic] In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate. Kabul is very important. It is the capital of Afghanistan, and all international establishments are centered in it. There are about 42 infidel states that have establishments in Kabul, and all of those who are in them are interested in the maintenance of security in the capital. Therefore, it appears that it is very difficult to attempt to carry out operations or launch attacks in Kabul. However, thanks to Almighty God and with the cooperation of the villages surrounding the capital and the wronged villages, you have heard reports about us carrying out successful operations in Kabul that shook the unbelievers severely and unsettled their states and establishments.
There are various operations. There are bombings, commando operations, joint operations, and even confrontations in the field. There are many examples of our targeting the capital where the situation is very delicate and where no one can move in its streets with ease.
However, the mujahidin's success in carrying out operations and attacks under those circumstances - especially the attack on the headquarters of the NATO forces and the targeting of the foreign ministry's administration [in Kabul], all of which were successful operations - is evidence of our strength. We have also attacked the interior ministry and the Serena Hotel. We downed a helicopter in the Ghamam area near Kabul. We were involved in engagements on very many fronts, the most important of which was the fierce engagement in the Masi area that lasted for more than 10 hours, and another engagement in the Uzbin area. All those confrontations demonstrate the strength of our mujahidin.
[Zaydan] Some weeks ago the Americans withdrew from Camp Dish, in the province of Nuristan. How is the situation in Nuristan, and do you expect that the Americans will withdraw - as some sources say -- from the Afghan villages and townships to the barracks and military centers in the cities?
[Jalali] Everyone has heard and learned about what happened in Nuristan where the mujahidin carried a series of successful attacks against the Americans who were known to have fled and left their positions just because the number of dead or wounded in their ranks had increased. What happened in Nuristan is an example and a repetition of what the mujahidin are doing in several areas where they carry out very fierce attacks in which many soldiers are killed, their tanks are set ablaze, and their barracks are destroyed. One can say that what happened in Nuristan is that the Americans' military headquarters were completely destroyed. Now [video briefly shows Jalili from the side without the opaque filter] the US forces are pursuing a policy of trying to use civilians as protection by getting closer to the popular markets that are crowded with people. However, they must learn the lesson of the Kabul market where they were not safe - they were attacked there and killed, and their post was destroyed. The same goes for the soldiers patrolling the markets of other cities, in for instance Nangarhar and Kunar. They are not safe even there. Foreigners will not be safe as long as they are in Afghanistan, and unless they leave Afghanistan the mujahidin will pursue them everywhere.
[Zaydan] W hat about the withdrawal of the US forces to military centers in the cities?
[Jalali] As I said to you, the foreign forces withdraw from places in which our mujahidin's attacks intensify and the soldiers flee to other places. Similar things have occurred in the province of Paktiya. According to information we have received, the foreign forces have not yet completely departed from Paktiya, and they are still present in an isolated part of Nuristan. However, our mujahidin are constantly attacking them in order to compel them to leave.
[Zaydan] A short while ago you attacked a UN guest house in Kabul. What was your message? Why did you attack this UN guest house?
[Jalali] The purpose of the mujahidin's attack on the UN headquarters was to impede - indeed to prevent - the organization of elections in Afghanistan. That is because the elections will not achieve the Afghan people's aspirations and will not achieve Taliban's aims. The elections are merely a game invented by America. Consequently, Taliban has declared that it will not allow the organization of the elections and it will not let the US game succeed. From such a premise, the mujahidin carried out their attack on the UN headquarters in order to abort the elections.
[Zaydan] Some reports say the Americans, the British, the Germans, the French, and all the forces that are present in Afghanistan pay money to Taliban's leaders so as to ensure the safety of their soldiers or the safety of the convoys that pass through the areas. Were you for instance paid sums of money or were you offered money so as not to attack those forces?
[Jalali, as camera shows the golden bracelet of a watch he is wearing, and a pistol by his side] These are all rumors disseminated by the enemy unbelievers. They say they pay money to the mujahidin in return for not launching attacks against the Americans. The purpose of such rumors is to attempt to win over any mujahid who loves money. However, the issue is not one of money. It is an ideological war. Throughout its history, Afghanistan has always struggled against and confronted the unbelievers who invaded and occupied the country and toppled the Islamic state, and thousands of Muslims were martyred during such struggles.
The premise of the Afghan resistance is ideological. The Afghan resistance is a jihadist resistance and does not achieve its objective by money. The French in the Sarobi area tried to send gifts to the mujahidin and offered them a great deal of money in return for not launching attacks on the French forces. However, the response of Taliban's mujahidin was to reject everything and to strongly demand the departure of the French and other forces from our country which they entered by force and aggression.
[Zaydan] There have been US reports about the formation of Lashkar and tribal councils led by some well-known leaders in northern and in southern Afghanistan to fight Taliban and so that the Americans will benefit from Lashkar and the tribal councils in their fight against you. Is that true? How will you face this US strategy?
[Jalali] The unbelievers have always tried to drive a wedge between Muslims. They sought to recruit followers and to plant spies so as to use them against the mujahidin. That took place in Logar, Qandahar, and Maydan. They created groups called Arbakai [tribal security system] on which they showered with vast sums of money and used them against the mujahidin. However, the mujahidin gave advice to the members of those groups and forbade them from serving the occupiers, explained to them that we have to defend our country, and those who were not convinced were killed. God willing, none of the enemies' schemes will succeed.
Here I must clarify an aspect of what is actually happening. There are many groups that take permission from Taliban and promise to take delivery of weapons from t h e foreign forces through the government, and after that they bring the weapons to us. Those groups have fulfilled their promise and brought the weapons and gave them to Taliban. God willing, the enemies will never succeed whatever they do.
[Zaydan] How is your relationship with other groups of fighters such as [Gulbuddin] Hekmatyar, [Jalaluddin] Haqqani, and the salafi group in Konar or Nuristan?
[Jalali] Sheikh Haqqani is one of the important people in the Islamic amirate. We cannot say that Haqqani is not a pillar of the Islamic amirate, for he is one of the amirate's leader. There is no one in Taliban who is described as salafi or (brenwi): they are all Muslim, and there must be no disagreement among Muslims, because the Americans are Christians and the Israelis are Jews. Their religion is different [from each other], their Book is different, and even their prophet is different, and yet they are united against the Muslims. We, or the salafis, have the same Book, and the same religion. Therefore, we must be united in the face of the unbelievers. We must struggle side-by-side against the unbelievers, and we must defend or homeland. We must liberate our persecuted country from the tyranny and aggression of those criminals. [A 37-seond break follows]
[Zaydan] Honorable viewers, welcome once again to "Today's Encounter" which is with commander Saifulalah Jalali, commander of the Kabul Front. You are commander of the Kabul Front. How do you receive orders from [Taliban leader] Mullah Omar, how do you receive orders from Mullah Omar? How do orders reach you?
[Jalali] The Commander of the Faithful, Mullah Mohammad Omar, may God protect him, has appointed Haj Mullah (Brother) as his deputy. There are rules and regulations that pertain to each province separately. Each province has a deputy who is responsible for its affairs, while others coordinate with him. For instance, I am responsible for the province of Kabul. I coordinate through my deputy with other deputies in the various provinces, until the coordination is with Mullah Omar. All that takes place in an organized and well-planned manner, and Mullah Omar personally follows up the coordination and fully supervises all matters. Here I must say that all this coordination takes place on the orders of Almighty God. It is a kind of achievement for us, that our affairs are arranged in this manner and that they are so exact. We can, for instance, communicate any report or convey any piece of information to officials anywhere. The same thing happens if we for instance wanted to enquire about what should be done with a spy whom we arrest, and what are the instructions that should be observed. As soon as we receive a reply, we free the person or kill him on the spot -- in accordance with instructions, of course.
[Zaydan] Now let us talk about...[changes drift of sentence]. Some Western reports constantly say that Mullah Omar is in Kuwait or in Karachi. What do you say? Where is Mullah Omar?
[Jalali] Our leader, the Commander of the Faithful, Mullah Mohammad Omar, is in Afghanistan. Praise be to God, many areas in Afghanistan are controlled by the mujahidin, especially the centers of some provinces where the government was present and which used to be under its control. Government employees do not have the real ability to run matters, let alone to work in the province's centers and capital. There are very many areas in Afghanistan where the Commander of the Faithfull walks in safety and lives in peace. Consequently, there is no need for him to go to Pakistan in the first place. There is no need for that, because Mullah Omar moves freely in many areas inside Afghanistan, where he issues his orders and guidance to the mujahidin. Moreover, the Pakistani intelligence service, ISI, is on alert, as you know.
Here the Americans seize the o pp ortunity. They say Mullah Omar has links with Pakistani intelligence. Thus they try to blemish his reputation and to apply pressure on the Pakistanis. This is a war of words, a media war. The Afghans know the Americans and the British well, and they know their schemes and ploys. The Afghans cannot be deceived by such lies.
[Zaydan] Some reports say there is mediation taking place between the Americans and Taliban. Is there really mediation?
[Jalali] The Americans are extremely tense and disturbed. That is because they are sustaining heavy losses, and many of their soldiers are being killed daily wherever they are. They are tense. They are trying to find mediation, but there has been no response whatsoever from Taliban.
[Zaydan] What are your conditions? What are your conditions for US withdrawal or for ending the war in Afghanistan?
[Jalali] The unbelievers have invaded our country, they overthrew our regime, many of our brothers were martyred, and our people were wronged. It is because of all that that we want the unbelievers to leave Afghanistan. We did not go to them. It is they who came to us and occupied our land. What we want is that they should leave our country unconditionally.
[Zaydan] The Americans stipulate or say that you should leave Al-Qa'ida. Are you prepared to abandon Al-Qa'ida if the Americans withdraw from Afghanistan?
[Jalali] Answering this question is the prerogative of the Islamic Amirate [of Afghanistan], and specifically the amirate's political leaders. I cannot say anything on this matter.
[Zaydan] Is Usama Bin Ladin, leader of Al-Qa'ida, alive? Is he in Afghanistan? Where is he according to your information?
[Jalali] I have no knowledge of that. I am responsible for the province of Kabul and the districts surrounding Kabul, the capital. We have many responsibilities, to the extent that we have no time for such matters.
[Zaydan] Are the losses which the Americans say they have sustained - in soldiers, tanks, and military vehicles correct? What is your estimate of foreign losses in this war?
[Jalali] The information I have about Kabul is that we emphasize to our followers that when they destroy two tanks, for instance, and they are not sure of having destroyed a third tank, it is their duty to report only the confirmed news of which they are ssure. This is in order that we do not lose the people's confidence in us. Lying is prohibited. Almighty God says: "...and invoke the curse of God upon those who lie," [Koran, House of Imran: 3: 61]. The curse of God befalls those who lie. The reports disseminated by Taliban on the destruction of tanks and the killing of soldiers are reliable and accurate. Taliban refrains from publishing reports that are doubtful and not definite. We always seek to ascertain accuracy so that people will not accuse the Islamic amirate of lying.
[Zaydan] What is your estimate of the number of Americans or foreigners who have been killed in Afghanistan or Kabul?
[Jalali] As far as I remember, in the Afghan capital of Kabul alone in 2009, we inflicted heavy losses on the Americans, the French, and also on the Italian forces. We destroyed 10 tanks when we set them ablaze in the (Osse). We destroyed about 20 more tanks in Sarobi area. We also set five tanks ablaze in Baghlan, in addition to destroying about 40 military vehicles and jeep cars, along the main roads connecting Kabul with Sar-e Pul, (Sarbiya), and Qandahar. The foreign forces know full well the extent of their losses in the areas I am talking about. In 2009, I can say that the number of foreign forces who were killed during the mujahidin's operations and attacks, including suicide attacks, totaled 200 soldiers.
[Zaydan] To get back to Kabul, what is the most important story or operation in Kabul which you always remem ber ?
[Jalali] We have faced many events. For instance, one of the most important of those events is that once I was driving a truck loaded with approximately 2,000 kg of gunpowder. I was stopped by soldiers at a checkpoint, and they searched one side of the truck but - thanks to Almighty and His help - the soldiers did not notice anything. At that moment, I felt as though I was besieged and that I will be arrested. However, with God's help I got away on that day.