Afghan, NATO forces must neutralise threats to Pakistan: FO

UN Analytical and Monitoring Team's report vindicates Pakistan’s position on threats posed by TTP, JuA, HuA and their affiliates based in Afghanistan

By: News Desk      Published: 01:17 AM, 8 Feb, 2021
Afghan, NATO forces must neutralise threats to Pakistan: FO
–File photo

The Foreign Office (FO) said on Sunday the latest report of the UN Analytical and Monitoring Team vindicated Pakistan’s longstanding position on threats posed to the country and the region by groups like the TTP, JuA, HuA and their affiliates based in Afghanistan.

Responding to media’s queries about the UN Analytical and Monitoring Team’s 27th report issued last week, the Foreign Office spokesperson said, “Pakistan, in the past, drew attention of the international community to the support provided to TTP and its affiliates by the hostile intelligence agencies. One of the results of that support was the merger of JuA, HuA and other splinter groups of LeJ with TTP in Afghanistan last year.

“Pakistan also raised the issue of cross border attacks carried out by TTP on security forces deployed on its side of the border. Pakistan acknowledges UNMT’s efforts in exposing the hostile agencies’ sponsored collusion of anti-Pakistan elements in Afghanistan. Pakistan expects that a dedicated effort will be launched by the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces (ANDSF) and Resolute Support Mission (RSM) to neutralise this threat emanating from Afghanistan.

“Pakistan stands firm in its resolve to partner with the international community against the menace of terrorism,” the Foreign Office spokesman said in a press release, which is also available on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

In its 27th report to the UN Security Council, a UN monitoring team, which tracks Al Qaeda, Islamic State and other extremist groups, pointed to arrests in Pakistan of "individuals engaging in terrorism financing and the freezing of the assets of designated individuals and entities”.

Diplomats noted that the UN acknowledgment of Pakistan actions comes at a time when India continues to blame Pakistan for inaction against the designated groups. Reporting on the activities of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the UN report saw the “reunification of splinter groups (of TTP) that took place in Afghanistan”.

The report records that “five entities pledged alliance to TTP in July and August (2020), including the Shehryar Mehsud group, Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, Hizb-ul-Ahrar, the Amjad Farooqi group and the Usman Saifullah group (formerly known as Lashkar-e- Jhangvi)”.

The report cautions that merger of the TTP has enhanced the threat of terrorism to Pakistan and the region, as it has “increased the strength of the TTP and resulted in a sharp increase in attacks”. 

In this regard, the UN reported that the “TTP was responsible for more than 100 cross-border attacks between July and October 2020”. The report said, based on estimates, the TTP's fighting strength ranges between 2,500 and 6,000. 

Last year, Pakistan handed over a dossier to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres on the Indian sponsorship of TTP and JuA. Both terrorist groups have been designated by the 1267 Sanctions Committee of the Security Council.