Conflicts & War

Taliban claim responsibility for killing Pakistani peacemaker

Islamabad, Sep 14 (EFE).- The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed responsibility for a bomb attack in northwest Pakistan that killed five people, including a prominent peacemaker.

“(We) killed peace committee leader Idrees Khan in Brai Bandi area of Swat district,” TTP spokesperson Muhammad Khurasani said in a statement late on Tuesday night.

Khurasani claimed that Khan was involved in killing Taliban fighters and torturing members and their families of the Islamist militant organization.

The attack left five people dead, including two cops guarding the peacemaker.

The remotely-detonated explosive targeted their vehicle in the Swat area of northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) province on Tuesday, police said.

The attack occurred in Bara Bandai village in Kabal tehsil of Swat district in the province, which the Taliban once had under their control in 2007.

The Pakistan army attributed the attack to militants operating from Afghan soil.

“Terrorists from inside Afghanistan across the international border, opened fire on Pakistani troops,” the army’s media wing said in a statement.

Peace committee members have been the target of TTP since the time they exercised control over the area between 2007 t0 2009, before being driven away to neighboring Afghanistan by the army.

The locals have denounced the return of the Taliban to the area. Police, however, the claim.

Recently, the Taliban said in a statement they had never left.

Locals have also staged protests against the presence of the Taliban and posted videos on social media showing armed men believed to be members of the insurgent group.

The TTP has been fighting the Pakistani forces to topple the central government and impose their brand of Shariah.

It has carried out numerous terror attacks killing thousands of citizens and security forces in the country since its emergence in 2007.

Negotiations between TTP and the government started after the Afghan Taliban seized power in Kabul in August last year, with the latter playing the role of a mediator.

Top clerics have also met with the Taliban in Afghanistan to help end the years-long conflict between the Pakistani forces and hard-line Pakistani militants. EFE


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