Taliban's Swat Chief Fazlullah Claims He Is In Afghanistan

Maulana Fazlullah, the chief of Taliban in Pakistan's Swat valley, has claimed that he fled to Afghanistan after evading troops conducting operations against militants and threatened to launch "hit and run attacks" soon against security
taliban s swat chief fazlullah claims he is in...
PTI November 17, 2009 20:44 IST

Maulana Fazlullah, the chief of Taliban in Pakistan's Swat valley, has claimed that he fled to Afghanistan after evading troops conducting operations against militants and threatened to launch "hit and run attacks" soon against security forces in the restive northwest region.

"I have arrived in Afghanistan safely," Fazlullah told BBC Urdu on phone.

 He read out a written statement and said his men will soon launch "hit and run attacks" on security forces in Swat.

The Pakistan Army should act to stop US drone attacks in the country's tribal belt and activities of American security contractors like Blackwater on Pakistani soil, he said.

Fazlullah also warned that North West Frontier Province Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain will meet the same fate as that of former Afghan President Najibullah.

The Taliban had hanged Najibullah and his brother after they captured Kabul in 1996.

Hussain has often condemned the actions of the Taliban and said the NWFP government will continue operations against the militants till they are eliminated.

Fazlullah said there is no need for US President Barack Obama to send more troops to Afghanistan as hundreds of thousands of Pakistani forces are fulfilling the objectives of the Americans in their own country.

He also said he had appointed Omar Hasan Ahrabi as his spokesman.

BBC reported that the phone used by Fazlullah had Afghanistan's country code and belonged to an Afghan mobile network.

The signals were very weak and the BBC correspondent was unable to get connected when he dialled the number.

The Pakistani military and federal ministers had claimed on several occasions that Fazlullah was injured during the anti-Taliban operations in Swat and surrounded by security forces.

Fazlullah, also known as "Mullah Radio" for his fiery broadcasts on an illegal FM station, rose to prominence in late 2007 when he led thousands of militants in a violent campaign to enforce Shariah or Islamic law in Swat, which was once a popular tourist destination.

He went on the run after the army launched an operation in Swat in May. PTI

 

 
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