ISIS flags hoisted near Pak ordnance unit in Islamabad
Islamabad: Security forces in Pakistan have seized four ISIS flags hoisted near a high-security ordnance unit near Islamabad sending alarm bells ringing in the security establishment.
The ISIS flags were found hoisted on electricity poles in a closely-guarded part of the historic city of Taxila, near the Pakistan Ordnance Factory (POF).
The flags came up after reports surfaced that a spokesman of the ISIS visited pro-Pak Taliban militant outfit Jundullah in Balochistan province.
Jundullah has also claimed responsibility for the Wagah border suicide bomb attack that killed at least 63 people.
The ISIS flags are also known locally by their Arabic acronym 'Daish'.
Afew flags, bearing the IS monogram, were found near the main entrance to the POF complex, while others were spotted on nearby electricity poles.
So far, no suspects have been detained. Investigators are looking at footage from surveillance cctv cameras to identify those who put up the flags.
Recently, Pakistan's Inter Service Intelligence (ISI) had revealed that about five commanders of Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) entered Pakistan from Australia.
According to security agencies, these commanders also shifted a large amount of gold from Saudi Arabia for financial support. Sources said, three ISIS commanders are present in Karachi while two are in Lahore.
According to the report, about 370 militants are present in Pakistan in which 22 are operating in Karachi. ISIS militants also provided financial support to TTP for attack in Karachi central jail.
According to intelligence sources, in early September, about a dozen militants crossed the border from Afghanistan to Pakistan with pamphlets and flags, urging locals to join the Islamic State.
They distributed hundreds of pamphlets in Afghan refugee camps and madrassas in Pakistan's Peshawar and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) regions, according to local militants.
These pamphlets, published in Pushto, Dari, and Farsi, were titled “Fateh,” meaning “victory.”
“Every Muslim must follow the orders of Caliph and should contribute in whichever capacity he or she can to assist the Islamic State against Taghoot (the enemies),” they said.
The pamphlets also said revival of Islam was only possible through jihad, and the final crusade between Muslims and infidels was imminent.
“The United States invaded the Muslim land, and we will use our force to invade them,” said former Al-Qaeda fighter Javed Iqbal, 32, who helped distribute the pamphlets and just returned from fighting in Syria.
Pakistan has become a breeding ground for jihadi militants. There are at least 48 jihadist groups, many of which act as proxies for Pakistan's spy agency ISI.
In Balochistan, local residentshave found walls chalked with messages that glorify the Islamic State and calling for fighters to join.
Local sources in Peshawar and Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa say IS started recruitment in Pakistan two years ago—“even before they emerged as ISIS themselves.
A member of the jihadist group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi said, "more than 200 fighters have left from Pakistan to join what is now called the Islamic State.”
Most of these fighters were from the Pakistani Taliban, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, and other militant groups.