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CrisisWatch Database

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Pakistan

  |  1 Jun 2016

Unchanged
Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour killed in U.S. drone strike near Afghan border 21 May (see Afghanistan); Pakistani interior minister said strike against international law, U.S. said its rules of engagement allow defensive strikes against threats to U.S. and coalition personnel. Worker from Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) political party died in paramilitary Rangers’ custody 3 May showing signs of torture, two days after being arrested; army chief Raheel Sharif ordered inquiry, Sindh Rangers director reportedly admitted torture took place, denied it was cause of death. MQM 2 May submitted list to Supreme Court naming 171 party members detained without charges. Sindh Chief Minister 4 May extended Rangers’ policing power for 77 days. Also in Karachi: civil society activist and blogger Khurram Zaki shot dead 7 May in suspected extremist killing. Eleven injured 12 May in clashes between MQM and its breakaway Pakistan Sarzameen Party faction in Hyderabad. Amid continued insurgent violence in Balochistan, Pakistani Taliban (TPP)-claimed bomb outside Quetta’s Balochistan University 10 May which killed two police. Police 5 May killed eight militants in Punjab’s Sheikhupura district, 10 May arrested five TPP and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) in Bahawalpur district. Son of ex-PM Yusuf Raza Gilani, abducted 2013, freed 9 May from al-Qaeda hideout in Afghanistan by U.S. and Afghan forces. Security forces 8 May arrested Afghan Border Security official in Pishin on spying charges. Opposition 4 May demanded inquiry into offshore holdings of PM Sharif’s family; Senate 20 May approved PM’s proposal to form committee to finalise terms of reference for establishing judicial commission.

Pakistan

  |  2 May 2016

Unchanged
Punjab police 9 April launched security operation against Chotoo criminal gang in southern Rajanpur and Rahim Yar Khan districts; gang 13 April killed six police, took 24 hostage. Military 16 April announced it had taken over operation, launched airstrikes; gang leader and twelve others surrendered 20 April, released hostages. Belying official claims of success of ongoing paramilitary-led Rangers operation in Karachi, seven police protecting polio workers shot dead in two attacks in city 20 April; five people also killed early April in drive-by shootings. Two police, two Lashkar-e-Jhangvi killed 2 April in Karachi police raid. Four killed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa including one police 7 April in unclaimed IED blast, Awami National Party leader 10 April in Pakistani Taliban attack, one police 12 April in unclaimed shooting. In other militant attacks, bomb 5 April derailed Lahore-Quetta train, killing one; guard of Bilal Afridi, leader of pro-govt armed group in Khyber Agency, killed 18 April intercepting suicide attack. Security forces reportedly killed 34 members of United Baloch Army 9 April in Kalat district. Frontier Corps 6 April announced arrest of alleged Afghan intelligence operative in Balochistan. Leaked records of offshore holdings implicating over 200 nationals including family of PM Sharif early April further undermined legitimacy of govt.

Pakistan

  |  1 Apr 2016

Deteriorated
Over 70 people killed and at least 300 injured in suicide bomb attack on park in Lahore 27 March; victims included many families celebrating Easter. Attack claimed by Pakistani Taliban faction Jamaat-ul-Ahrar (JA) which said it was targeting Christians. Amid criticism of inadequate security, PM Sharif called for better coordination on part of security services against terrorism; military and intelligence agencies conducted raids following attacks, killing five suspects and arresting more than 600. Violent protests against execution of Mumtaz Qadri, Punjab Governor Salman Taseer’s murderer, in Islamabad, with thousands of Islamist activists besieging parliament and destroying public property, ended 30 March with govt reportedly agreeing not to amend blasphemy law, to show no leniency to those imprisoned on blasphemy charges, and to release non-violent demonstrators. At least 31 killed in insurgent attacks throughout month, including in Peshawar, Mohmand Agency and Sibi districts. Dozens of suspected insurgents also killed by security forces during month, including in N Waziristan, Karachi, Punjab and Balochistan. Security forces 10 March reportedly arrested fourteen members of Afghan Taliban near Quetta. Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar 2 March ordered investigation into allegations that Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) party received Indian funding and weapons; former Karachi mayor Mustafa Kamal next day accused MQM party leader of ties with Indian intelligence. Supreme Court 11 March rejected request by paramilitary Rangers to establish separate police structure and one year extension of special policing powers in Sindh province.

Pakistan

  |  1 Mar 2016

Unchanged

Continued attacks against security personnel raised concerns that extremist outfits have regrouped and operating freely; govt early Feb said terrorists being funded externally by “hostile intelligence agencies” to foment instability. Intelligence Bureau head 11 Feb said Pakistani Taliban (TTP) has ties with Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) and Sipah-e-Sahaba (SSP) extremist groups and is coordinating with Islamic State (IS), which is growing in country; Foreign Ministry and Interior Minister denied, said IS has no organised presence in Pakistan. Army 12 Feb reported arrest of 97 suspected al-Qaeda and LeJ militants in Karachi. Attacks in Balochistan included eleven killed 6 Feb in TTP-claimed suicide bombing near military convoy in Quetta; ten members of Balochistan Liberation Army reported killed, twelve arrested 14 Feb in Sibi district raid. U.S. drone strike in Afghanistan’s Paktika province 1 Feb reportedly killed eighteen TTP militants. In Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), TTP’s Jamaat-ul-Ahrar faction claimed responsibility for two attacks in Mohmand Agency 18 Feb, nine tribal police killed. In other militant attacks, Awami National Party Swabi district councillor and her two children killed in Peshawar 10 Feb, TTP suspected; three police killed 10-12 Feb in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK). Former Afghan governor Fazlullah Wahidi kidnapped 12 Feb in Islamabad, later freed by police; policeman killed at routine checkpoint search 12 Feb. Punjab Counter-Terrorism Department 17 Feb reported seven suspected TTP and LeJ militants killed in Sheikhupura district; polio worker wounded, two police killed same day in two attacks in Lahore. Country-wide protests 29 Feb following execution of Mumtaz Qadri for 2011 murder of Punjab governor Salman Taseer. International Federation of Journalists reported Pakistan fourth deadliest country in world for journalists in 2015.

Pakistan

  |  1 Feb 2016

Unchanged

Deadly attack on Bacha Khan University in Khyber Pakhtunkwa (KPK)’s Charsadda district 20 Jan killed at least twenty including fourteen students, faculty member, librarian, two security guards, driver. Four attackers killed in clashes with security forces; Pakistani Taliban (TTP) denied involvement, however TTP faction commander Umar Mansoor, alleged by some to have masterminded Dec 2014 Peshawar school attack, claimed credit, his group threatened further attacks on schools. Five arrested 23 Jan charged with aiding militants. Dozens killed in terrorist attacks during month, including eleven killed by suicide bomber at market near police checkpoint in Peshawar 19 Jan. Anti-terrorism court 11 Jan issued arrest warrants for Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) leader Hussain and twenty others for “criminal conspiracy against the state” over their criticisms of paramilitary Rangers’ activities in Karachi. Violence continued in Balochistan, several security personnel killed in attacks. Seventeen killed including twelve police in suicide attack outside polio vaccination centre in Quetta 13 Jan; TTP and Jundullah both claimed responsibility. Punjab law minister 3 Jan announced 42 arrested for alleged Islamic State (IS) links. Nearly 80 militants reportedly surrendered to govt forces in N Waziristan region 15 Jan. Reviewing implementation of National Action Plan (NAP) against terrorism, interior minister 30 Dec said govt efforts had significantly improved security, conceded banned extremist groups re-emerging under new name; acknowledged limited progress on reforming status of FATA, finding solutions to Afghan refugee presence, strengthening criminal justice system.

Pakistan

  |  4 Jan 2016

Unchanged

Four men hanged 2 Dec for involvement in Dec 2014 Peshawar school attack, first executions in connection to attack. Attacks in FATA included: at least 23 suspected militants killed 15 Dec in airstrikes in Khyber Agency; bomb targeting Shias in Parachinar 13 Dec killed at least 22, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) and S Waziristan-based Ansar ul Mujahidin both claimed responsibility. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) police 12 Dec reportedly arrested over 500 for suspected terrorism links. At least 22 killed in suicide bomb in KPK’s Mardan 29 Dec; Pakistani Taliban faction Jamaat-ul Ahrar claimed responsibility. Sindh’s civil-military provincial apex committee 2 Dec announced creation of 30 anti-terrorism courts and hiring of 8,000 police and twenty prosecutors to support Karachi operation. Sindh assembly 16 Dec extended Rangers’ policing powers in Karachi, though with conditions and limitations following intense criticism of Rangers’ methods and overreach. Police 1 Dec killed four suspected militants in raid targeting al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent in S Punjab; 11 Dec killed five suspected LeJ members in Lahore. Nine suspected militants with alleged ties to Islamic State (IS) arrested in Punjab 28 Dec. Attacks on journalists continued, including grenade attacks on television network offices in Lahore 1 Dec injuring four, and 7 Dec attack in Punjab’s Sargodha district. Lahore High Court 9 Dec acquitted Sunni extremist Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan’s (SSP) Qari Muhammad Yousaf, overturning May 2015 sentence by anti-terrorism court. Balochistan govt 7 Dec extended paramilitary Corps’ policing powers; continuing violence in province included: gunmen 8 Dec killed two National Party members in Khuzdar district; security forces 14 Dec killed at least thirteen suspected militants in Awaran district. Pakistan military 11 Dec test-fired intermediate range nuclear-capable ballistic missile.

Pakistan

  |  1 Dec 2015

Unchanged

Military claimed airstrikes killed twenty militants in Tirah and Rajgal areas of Khyber agency 7 Nov, and 22 in N Waziristan’s Shawal valley 14 Nov. Despite claims of military successes, several killed in continued attacks on security personnel. Journalist and member of Human Rights Commission of Pakistan Zaman Mehsud killed 3 Nov in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK)’s Tank district; Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan claimed responsibility. Signs of civil-military tensions after military warned that insufficient progress on implementation of anti-terrorism National Action Plan could undermine operations against extremist groups. All-parties conference in Islamabad 2 Nov backed proposal for constitutional amendment to merge FATA with KPK, thus extending full political and other constitutional rights to tribal belt; PM Sharif instead formed five-member committee 9 Nov to examine FATA reform options, widely seen as military-devised attempt to delay debate and passage of proposed constitutional amendment; FATA-political parties alliance participants 16 Nov staged demonstration calling for merger. National Assembly 14 Nov passed Pakistan Army (amendment) bill, granting armed forces, civil armed forces and law enforcement agencies legal cover for arrests and detentions, and allowing military courts to conceal identity of “persons concerned with court proceedings”. Separatist Baloch Republic Army leader issued statement 15 Nov requesting Baloch leaders to develop unified stance, including on possible negotiations with state conditional on military ending operations in Balochistan. Several killed in continued militant violence, including three people killed in bomb attack on train in Mastung district 1 Nov. Army Chief Sharif visited Washington DC mid-Nov for meetings with military and intelligence counterparts and VP.

Pakistan

  |  2 Nov 2015

Unchanged

Bomb blast killed two security personnel in FATA’s Mohmand agency 3 Oct; head of anti-Taliban militia killed in roadside bomb in Bannu district, adjacent to N Waziristan, next day. Several killed in ongoing attacks and clashes in Balochistan, including eleven people killed 19 Oct in bomb blast in bus in provincial capital Quetta, at least ten killed in suicide bombing at Shiite mosque in Bhaag 22 Oct. Sixteen killed in suicide attack in Jacobabad district 23 Oct during Muharram procession, despite additional security across country ahead of Muharram (first month of Islamic calendar). Interior ministry 6 Oct reported 588 people killed and 10,007 injured in 821 terrorist attacks Jan-Aug 2015. Seven killed in bomb blast in Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz MP’s office in Punjab’s Dera Ghazi Khan district 14 Oct. U.S. and Pakistan 22 Oct released joint statement concluding PM Sharif’s visit to Washington D.C., reaffirming “mutual commitment to democracy”, amid continued U.S. concerns about Pakistani support to Afghanistan and India-oriented jihadi proxies. Govt appointed newly retired Lieutenant General Naseer Khan Janjua national security advisor 23 Oct. Amid ongoing Rangers crackdown against its workers in Karachi, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) 9 Oct retracted resignations of its parliamentarians, ending two-month boycott, after senior party leaders and federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar agreed to formation of “Grievances Redressal Committee”; MQM leader in exile Altaf Hussain objected to party’s return to parliament. Earthquake near border in northern Afghanistan killed at least 267 in Pakistan, mostly in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Pakistan

  |  1 Oct 2015

Unchanged

Dozens killed in attack on Peshawar’s Badaber air force base 18 Sept; Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility. Authorities blamed Afghanistan for failing to prevent militant groups from using its territory to plan and launch attacks. Visiting Islamabad 30 Aug, U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice urged Pakistan to take action against Haqqani Network. National Security Advisor Sartaj Aziz 31 Aug told German FM that military operations in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA)’s N Waziristan Agency had almost destroyed Haqqani Network, which had shifted operations to Afghanistan. Airstrikes and ground operations in N Waziristan and Khyber agency continued. Military 7 Sept announced its first armed drone strike, killing three militant leaders in Shawal. U.S. drone attacks also continued. Deadly militant attacks and clashes continued in FATA’s Bajaur Agency, Khyber agency and S Waziristan. In Balochistan, four bodies found in Kalat district 6 Sept; at least 80 extrajudicial killings reported in province this year. Balochistan home secretary 16 Sept said 8,000 suspected militants arrested and 204 alleged terrorists killed in province this year. In Karachi, gunmen 8 Sept killed technician with private Geo TV channel, and driver and key witness in April murder of rights activist Sabeen Mahmud; former Geo TV anchor shot dead next day. Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) 3 Sept withdrew from negotiations with federal govt on resignations of its parliamentarians, citing failure to investigate arrests and killings of party members in Rangers-led operations.

Pakistan

  |  1 Sep 2015

Unchanged

Supreme Court 5 Aug ruled in favour of Eighteenth and Twenty-first constitutional amendments, dismissing challenges to establishment of military courts to try suspects, including civilians, on terrorism charges; affirmed court's right to oversee military courts. In Karachi, ongoing security operation mainly targeted Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM); MQM Senator Nasreen Jalil 10 Aug said 41 party workers killed since start of operation in 2013, 150 people missing in past three months; interior minister refuted allegations. MQM members of National Assembly, Senate and Sindh provincial assembly resigned 12 Aug, calling for creation of monitoring committee to oversee security operation and judicial commission to investigate alleged extrajudicial killings of party workers and release of imprisoned members. Sindh chief minister 8 Aug extended Sindh Rangers’ policing powers by another 120 days. Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility for murder of judge in Rawalpindi 5 Aug. Drone strike killed five suspected militants in N Waziristan 6 Aug. Military reported 90 militants in N Waziristan and fifteen in Khyber agency died in airstrikes 16 and 17 Aug. Military launched new offensive against TTP 21 Aug. Three bodies found in Balochistan’s Turbat on 25 July, nine in Quetta and Pishin districts 10 Aug. Police killed leader of sectarian militant outfit Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) Malik Ishaq, two sons and over ten members 29 July; at Ishaq’s funeral violent demonstrators attacked Shia mosques and private property, two police killed in attack on police station in Gujrat. 16 Aug suicide attack killed Punjab home minister and sixteen others; attack reportedly claimed by LeJ, TTP faction Jamaat ul Ahrar and Khyber agency-based Lashkar-e-Islam.

Pakistan

  |  3 Aug 2015

Unchanged

Media 3 July reported military had concluded operation “Khyber-II” 15 June, three-month operation intended to retake control over militant strongholds in Tirah and Bara valleys. Several soldiers killed in militant attacks in N and S Waziristan early July. Militants 9 July bombed school in Khyber Agency. Ongoing incidents in Balochistan included suicide bomb attack in Quetta marketplace 5 July injuring nineteen; gunmen killed two Balochistan Constabulary members 13 July; nine alleged militants killed in paramilitary operations in Khuzdar and Awaran districts 20 July. Balochistan’s apex committee 27 June announced amnesty package for Baloch insurgents who disarm and renounce violence, but with no commitment to address Baloch grievances, including military’s extrajudicial killings and other rights violations. Paramilitary Rangers 17 July conducted raid on Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) HQ in Karachi, detaining two senior MQM members and others for “facilitating hate speeches”; in subsequent raids reportedly arrested scores of MQM workers. Non-govt Human Rights Commission of Pakistan 15 July noted increase in extrajudicial killings in Karachi during Rangers-led counter-terrorism operation against criminal networks, from 191 in first half of 2014 to 255 in same period 2015. Sindh’s PPP govt 17 July extended Rangers broad policing powers in Karachi for another year. EU Council 20 July expressed concern about recent govt measures limiting NGOs’ freedom. Three-member judicial commission 22 July rejected allegations by Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) of organised rigging in 2013 election after three-month probe; PTI accepted findings.

Pakistan

  |  1 Jul 2015

Unchanged

Govt and military officials 13 June marked one-year anniversary of Zarb-e-Azb, military operation in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA)’s North Waziristan agency, declaring ongoing success against militant groups, including killing over 2,700 insurgents. Militant attacks in FATA continued, including 1 June roadside bomb in S Waziristan that killed three, 8 June clash near Dattakhel in N Waziristan in which seven soldiers and nineteen militants reported killed, and 17 June bombing of primary school in Bajaur. Attacks on Quetta’s Shia Hazara community continued. Eight police shot dead in Quetta 6, 11 June; several police also killed in attacks in Peshawar and Karachi. Paramilitary Frontier Corps 1 June claimed to have killed thirteen Baloch militants involved in 29 May attack on bus killing 22 Pashtuns. In review headed by PM and Army Chief, senior civilian and military officials 27 May noted poor implementation of National Action Plan against terrorism, particularly regarding action against banned jihadi groups, foreign terrorism funding, hate speech and madrasa reform. Anti-terrorism court 5 June freed eight of ten people implicated in Oct 2012 attack on Malala Yousafzai; police cited insufficient evidence. Former President Asif Ali Zardari 16 June criticised military for overstepping its authority in Karachi, amid concerns about moves to oust Pakistan Peoples Party’s Sindh govt. Interior ministry 11 June reportedly ordered nine international NGOs to leave country within fifteen days; following pressure from U.S. and UK suspended order. Govt criticised as over 1,000 died in heatwave in Karachi.

Pakistan

  |  1 Jun 2015

Deteriorated

Criminal and terrorist violence continued in Karachi, despite govt claims 18 May that targeted killings in city had halved since Sept 2013 launch of paramilitary Rangers operation; gunmen 13 May attacked bus with members of Ismaili Shia minority on board, executing 45. Police 19 May said four members of militant group “inspired by al-Qaeda” arrested and confessed involvement in attacks on Ismaili and Bohra communities and on social activist Mahmud, U.S. educationalist Lobo and police officials. Militant violence in FATA and adjacent Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) continued, contradicting army chief’s 18 May claims that army had “cleansed large remote areas of terrorists”. Militants attacked military checkposts in Bajaur and S Waziristan agencies; military claimed to have killed 56 militants in N Waziristan and 56 in Khyber agency in airstrikes. Peshawar police counter-terrorism department deputy superintendent killed 20 May in TTP-claimed shooting. Drone strikes in N Waziristan’s Shawal region 16 and 18 May reportedly killed six suspected militants. Paramilitary Frontier Corps 7 May claimed they had killed thirteen Baloch militants including Baloch Liberation Army commander south of Quetta. At least twenty bus passengers shot dead in Balochistan attack 29 May.

Pakistan

  |  30 Apr 2015

Unchanged

Army Chief Sharif 2 April approved first sentences issued by military court under new powers granted under 21st constitutional amendment (passed 6 Jan), including six sentenced to death. Supreme Court 16 April issued stay on any death sentences awarded by military courts until judges decide on legal challenge against 21st amendment. According to govt reports on implementation of National Action Plan (NAP) to combat violent extremism in wake of Dec Peshawar school attack, law enforcement agencies arrested over 32,300 people as of 25 March, but found fewer than 1% linked to terror groups. Gunmen 11 April killed twenty Sindhi and Punjabi workers in Balochistan’s southern district Kech; separatist Balochistan Liberation Front (BLF) claimed responsibility. Paramilitary Frontier Corps claimed it had killed thirteen BLF militants, including those responsible for attack, in operation around Turbat. U.S. drone strike in S Waziristan 12 April killed four. Supreme Court 8 April formed judicial commission to investigate allegations of rigging in 2013 elections. Parliament 10 April unanimously passed resolution calling for neutrality in Yemen conflict, while pledging to help defend Saudi Arabia against violation of its territorial integrity. Prominent activist Sabeen Mahmud shot dead in Karachi 24 April after organising event on Balochistan, originally meant to be hosted by Lahore University of Management Sciences 9 April but canceled reportedly under pressure from military intelligence agency.

Pakistan

  |  1 Apr 2015

Unchanged

Head of National Counter Terrorism Authority Hamid Ali Khan 8 March reportedly said govt had decided to drop three of twenty points in new counter-terrorism National Action Plan, namely actions against banned militant organisations, madrasa reform, and repatriation of Afghans; Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali refuted claim. After saying late Feb that govt plans to repatriate all Afghans, federal minister for state and frontier regions Abdul Qadir Baloch 11 March said govt instead planned to register 1.4 million unregistered Afghans. Suicide attacks on two Lahore churches 15 March killed seventeen, injured more than 70; amid countrywide demonstrations against attacks 17 March, Christian protestors allegedly killed two men by setting them on fire. Paramilitary Rangers 11 March raided Karachi HQ of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), detaining 100 and recovering weapons it claimed were stolen from NATO shipments (denied by U.S.). MQM alleged Rangers killed one of its members in raid; Rangers denied. Four suspected Taliban killed in clash with security forces in Karachi 10 March; two police killed in bomb attack in city 27 March. Spokesperson of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) breakaway faction Jamatul Ahrar 13 March announced his group and Khyber agency-based Lashkar-e-Islam merging with TTP. Former TTP commander in N Waziristan 16 March reportedly announced his newly-created breakaway faction Jaish-e-Muttaqi had reached peace deal with govt. Army 16 March announced successful end of its operation in Khyber agency; reported scores of militants killed in airstrikes and ground offensives in area in second half of month. Two polio vaccinators and police escort shot dead 17 March in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Mansehra district; another vaccinator killed in FATA’s Bajaur agency next day. Defence Minister Asif in talks with Saudi Arabia 31 March on whether to join Saudi-led military campaign in Yemen against Houthi rebels.

Pakistan

  |  2 Mar 2015

Unchanged

Uneven progress in implementing new counter-terrorism “National Action Plan”, adopted following deadly Dec attack on Peshawar school; army 13 Feb said nine militants arrested out of 27 linked to attack. Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT, also known as Jamaat-ud-Dawa) 5 Feb held rallies in several major cities after interior ministry official late Jan admitted neither LeT nor Haqqani Network added to list of banned terrorist organisations, contradicting earlier official claims. Punjab home minister 15 Feb said forty terrorism cases referred to military courts since Jan empowerment of courts to try civilian suspects under 21st constitutional amendment and Pakistan Army Act (amendment) bill; President Hussain 12 Feb extended latter to cover Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), allowing military courts to try terrorism suspects there. Pakistan Bar Council and Supreme Court Bar Association 9 Feb jointly challenged 21st amendment in Supreme Court: said it was passed under military pressure, undermines fundamental rights and judicial independence. Sectarian attacks and other militant violence continued: 22 killed in attack on Shiite mosque in Peshawar 13 Feb, another three killed in attack on mosque in Rawalpindi 18 Feb; paramilitary forces 15 Feb reportedly killed commander of Sunni group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), accused of masterminding deadly late Jan bombing of Shiite mosque in Sindh; several members of Sunni extremist group Sipah-e-Sahaba (also known as Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat) killed in targeted attacks, including three in Karachi 1 Feb; eight killed in suicide attack near Lahore police HQ 17 Feb. Military operation continued in NW: army claimed at least 25 militants killed 4 Feb. Fifteen separatist militants, one soldier reported killed in Balochistan province 10 Feb.

Pakistan

  |  2 Feb 2015

Unchanged

Govt and parliamentary opposition continued to cede control over national security policy to military following deadly mid-Dec Peshawar school attack by Pakistani Taliban (TTP); 6 Jan passed 21st constitutional amendment and Pakistan Army Act (amendment) bill 2015, overriding many fundamental rights and allowing military courts to try civilian terrorism suspects. Supreme Court 22 Jan decided to consider petitions against 21st amendment after Lahore High Court Bar Association 2 Jan passed resolution against military courts, Sindh High Court Bar Association 14 Jan challenged amendment through constitutional petition; outcome of consideration seen as defining test of court’s willingness to uphold judicial independence, fundamental rights. Govt closed 40 printing presses and stores, reportedly arrested 157 for hate speech or publishing hate material following late Dec adoption of counter-terrorism “National Action Plan”; 20 prisoners executed by mid-Jan following lifting of moratorium on death penalty. Jamaat-ud-Dawa (formerly Lashkar-e-Tayyaba) and other jihadi groups continued to operate freely despite govt pledges to end distinction between “good” and “bad” militants, latter targeting Pakistani state, former neighbouring countries. At least 60 killed in bombing of Shiite mosque in Sindh province’s Shikarpur district 30 Jan. Dozens of militants reported killed in U.S. drone strikes including six in N Waziristan 19 Jan. Military operation continued in NW; army claimed 92 militants killed in airstrikes 27 Jan.

Pakistan

  |  5 Jan 2015

Deteriorated
Pakistani Taliban (TTP) 16 Dec killed at least 148, including 132 children, in unprecedentedly deadly attack on military-run school in north-western city Peshawar; TTP called attack retaliation for army killings during operation against militants in NW. Military campaign escalated following attack, including scores reported killed in Khyber agency 18-19 Dec; militant suspected of involvement in Peshawar attack reported killed 26 Dec. PM Sharif lifted moratorium on death penalty: six non-TTP militants, allegedly responsible for attacks on military, executed 19-21 Dec, including five over failed 2003 assassination attempt against former President Musharraf; Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan 22 Dec said preparations underway for executions of nearly 500 terrorism convicts. Interior ministry late Dec claimed to have arrested several militants in relation to Peshawar attack; issued arrest warrants for TTP leader Mullah Fazlullah and former spokesperson Shahidullah Shahid over June 2014 Karachi airport attack. At least twenty TTP militants reported killed by police in Karachi 18-21 Dec. Parliamentary committee 24 Dec reached agreement on several counter-terrorism measures, including setting up special military courts to hear terrorism cases; Senate opposition leaders opposed setting up military courts through constitutional amendment that would curtail fundamental rights. Govt announced PM Sharif will head committee supervising implementation of new counter-terrorism “National Action Plan”. Supreme Court 9 Dec dismissed all petitions for PM Sharif’s removal, including from Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI). PTI mid-month organised anti-govt protests in Karachi and Lahore before calling off further protests in response to Peshawar attack. Court 18 Dec granted bail to Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, behind deadly 2008 attacks in Mumbai, drawing strong reactions from India (see India); Lakhvi later detained on other charges. U.S.-wanted al-Qaeda leader reported killed by army in S Waziristan 6 Dec; four reported killed in U.S. drone strike next day, at least dozen more killed in N Waziristan late month.

Pakistan

  |  1 Dec 2014

Unchanged

Large-scale demonstrations by Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) continued in several cities despite dwindling attendance in Islamabad: Khan 9 Nov called for involvement of military’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Military Intelligence (MI) in judicial commission to investigate fraud in 2013 elections; call met with sharp criticism, including from major political parties, govt rejected demand. Khan threatened to wage “decisive war” against govt ahead of 30 Nov Islamabad rally. Suicide bomber 2 Nov killed at least 57, injured hundreds near Wagah-Attari border with India; Pakistani Taliban (TTP) group Jamaat-ul Ahrar claimed responsibility, threatened attacks inside India. Afghan President Ghani 15 Nov visited Islamabad; PM Sharif expressed support for “Afghan-led”, “intra-Afghan” reconciliation process, Ghani promised to target Pakistani tribal militants operating from Afghanistan. Sharif’s foreign affairs advisor Sartaj Aziz 17 Nov suggested military should not target anti-U.S. militant groups not posing threat to state, including Haqqani network; foreign ministry claimed Aziz quoted out of context. Military operation in N Waziristan continued: army 16 Nov said 90% of N Waziristan cleared of militants, 1,200 killed in past five months; two IDPs killed in clash with police 13 Nov in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s (KPK) Bannu district. TTP chief Fazlullah 25 Nov survived U.S. drone strike in Afghan border province, five other militants killed. Highest number of polio cases since 1999 recorded mid-Nov; three killed in bomb attack on polio patrol in FATA’s Bajaur agency 11 Nov, four polio workers shot dead in Quetta 26 Nov. Mob 4 Nov tortured and killed two Christians outside Lahore following blasphemy charges by local clerics; policeman next day killed Shia held on blasphemy charges in Gujrat. PM Sharif, Indian PM Modi dismissed rumours about planned bilateral meeting during late Nov summit of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation in Nepal.

Pakistan

  |  1 Nov 2014

Unchanged

Month saw anti-govt demonstrations in Islamabad lose momentum, attendance dwindle; protest leaders Imran Khan of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and Tahirul Qadri of Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) mobilised rallies outside capital, including in Karachi, Lahore, smaller cities in Punjab; Qadri 22 Oct ended PAT protest in Islamabad. Demonstrations retained potential to undermine political stability: Supreme Court 15 Oct admitted appeal by PTI member to disqualify PM Sharif for lying to parliament despite lack of constitutional provision for such disqualification, apparently overstepping jurisdiction. PTI held govt responsible for failure to prevent seven deaths in stampede during PTI rally in Punjab’s Multan 10 Oct. Govt 17 Oct reportedly resumed talks with PAT over alleged June police killing of 14 PAT demonstrators in Lahore; Qadri 19 Oct declared settlement only possible if perpetrators hanged; left country 28 Oct after ending Islamabad sit-in, pledged to return mid-Nov. TTP spokesperson Shahidullah Shahid fired after declaring allegiance to Syria and Iraq-based jihadi group Islamic State along with five regional TTP commanders mid-month. Sectarian violence continued: six killed in Shia majority neighbourhood in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Kohat district 4 Oct; six Hazara Shias killed in Quetta same day; another thirteen reported killed 23 Oct including nine Hazaras. Military continued operations in N Waziristan; mid- to late Oct conducted operations in Khyber Agency, claimed to have killed scores of militants, thousands of civilians fled fighting. U.S. increased drone strikes in S and N Waziristan: conducted nine strikes within one week starting 5 Oct, at least eight reported killed 6 Oct.

Pakistan

  |  1 Oct 2014

Unchanged

Continued signs military exploiting protests by Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and Tahirul Qadri’s Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) to influence politics: PTI president Javed Hashmi 1 Sept said military elements encouraged Khan-led protests; Khan 16 Sept claimed army chief said govt would meet all protest demands except PM’s resignation. Joint session of parliament 19 Sept condemned protests. Govt negotiations with PTI and PAT suspended after police arrested over 500 protestors in Islamabad and Lahore 12 Sept; majority quickly released, charges dropped. Over 300 killed, hundreds of thousands displaced by flooding in Punjab and Pakistan-administered Kashmir, adding to almost 1mn displaced by ongoing military operation in N Waziristan. Jihadi organisations continued to exploit govt failure to provide adequate assistance: offered assistance through charity wings, sought to stoke anti-India sentiments in flood-affected areas (see Kashmir). Military claimed more than 1,000 militants, some 100 soldiers killed in N Waziristan operation since mid-June. Army spokesman 15 Sept claimed Pakistani Taliban (TTP) no longer able to launch attacks; at least four reported killed in TTP suicide bombing targeting military convoy in Peshawar 23 Sept; two killed in attack targeting senior counter-terrorism police officer in Karachi 25 Sept; at least seven killed in attack on IDP camp in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 28 Sept. TTP faction “Punjabi Taliban” 5 Sept declared intention to halt attacks in Pakistan and focus on Afghanistan, indicating peace deal with military. Other Punjab-based anti-Shia groups continued sectarian killings countrywide including: son of Shia Jafria Alliance Pakistan party leader murdered 6 Sept in Karachi by Lashkar-e-Jhangvi; head of Karachi University Islamic Studies department shot dead 19 Sept. Lieutenant General Rizwan Akhtar appointed new chief of Inter-Services Intelligence 22 Sept. At least 14 suspected militants reported killed in U.S. drone strikes in N and S Waziristan late month.

Pakistan

  |  1 Sep 2014

Deteriorated Risk Alert

Month saw mass anti-govt demonstrations threaten fragile democratic transition, raise fears of military intervention: parallel protests led by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Imran Khan and Pakistan Awami Tehreek leader, cleric Tahirul Qadri, demanded PM Sharif's resignation and parliament's dissolution, rejected govt offers of negotiated settlement. Govt refuted rumours of military support for protests, relied on army for security in Islamabad despite concerns military could exploit crisis to extend political influence at govt’s expense; coup seen as unlikely by observers, opposed by all mainstream political parties, civil society, and superior courts. Khan and Qadri-led protest marches reached Islamabad from Lahore mid-month after at least 4 Qadri supporters killed in clashes with police early month in Punjab; 19 Aug entered Islamabad’s “Red Zone” containing parliament, other official buildings. Fears spread extremists could exploit situation to attack high level targets, provoke violence. Govt sought peaceful resolution including accepting Khan’s demands for audit of 2013 election result in certain constituencies, judicial commission investigation of vote rigging allegations; talks ongoing late month, both Qadri and Khan continued refusing to modify demand for PM’s resignation. Army chief Raheel Sharif 28 Aug met protest leaders, reportedly agreed to act as guarantor for deal with govt; military’s overt role strongly condemned in parliament, PM Sharif 29 Aug insisted govt only requested military facilitation, no request to act as mediator or guarantor; Khan and Qadri denied responsibility for involving military. At least 3 killed, over 200 wounded in clashes between protesters and police 30-31 Aug. Military continued N Waziristan operation, claimed progress in dismantling militant networks; at least 5 alleged militants killed in 6 Aug U.S. drone strike N Waziristan. Militants launched several high profile attacks including: 13 soldiers injured, 11 attackers killed in 14 Aug attacks on 2 Quetta air force bases, claimed by Pakistani Taliban (TTP) and Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU). N Waziristan IDP crisis deteriorated further: military continued to refuse access for local and international humanitarian agencies; vacuum exploited by charity wings of jihadi organisations.

Pakistan

  |  1 Aug 2014

Deteriorated

Army operations against tribal militants continued in N Waziristan, causing mass displacement, humanitarian assistance inadequate. Military 15 July claimed to have killed 447 militants, destroyed 88 hideouts; also claimed clearing 80% of N Waziristan’s administrative HQ, Miramshah town, of militants; claim later denied. FATA Disaster Management Authority registered nearly 1mn IDPs fleeing operations by 22 July, majority to neighbouring Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. Military in control of humanitarian response, aid distribution limited: access restricted for foreign aid organisations and local NGOs; reports charity fronts of jihadi organisations allowed to conduct relief activities. Estimated 25,000 residents fled FATA’s Bajaur Agency ahead of anticipated military strikes following 12 July attack killing 3 security personnel; military later reached accord with Bajaur-based militias who pledged to confront anti-state militants themselves. U.S. drone campaign continued in N Waziristan: several reported strikes including 7 suspected militants killed 10 July; 20 killed 16 July; 11 killed 19 July. Police and paramilitary operations continued in Karachi, including 5 suspected militants killed 15 July. Security forces 17 July raided militant safe house near PM Sharif’s home in Lahore, 1 security official, 1 suspect killed. Controversial Protection of Pakistan Bill, criticised for threatening constitutionally protected rights and violating obligations under international law, signed into law 11 July; Senate amendments enhanced some judicial oversight, limited validity to 2 years.

Pakistan

  |  1 Jul 2014

Deteriorated

Scores killed in attack on Karachi’s international airport 8 June, including 29 mainly airport security and staff, 10 Uzbek militants: attack claimed by Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) and Pakistani Taliban (TTP). TTP claimed another attack on security camp near airport 10 June, no casualties; gunmen 24 June fired on plane landing at Peshawar airport killing 1. Retaliatory army airstrikes targeted militants in NW, including 35 reported killed in Khyber Agency 11 June; govt 14 June announced launch of military operation in N Waziristan, military 2 days later claimed airstrikes had killed 187 militants; N Waziristan residents warned to leave region by 23 June ahead of ground assault beginning 30 June. Hundreds of thousands fled fighting; army 18 June relaxed curfew to allow civilians out, many senior Afghan and Pakistani militants reportedly allowed to leave, some across border to Afghanistan. After 6-month pause, U.S. drone strikes 11 June targeted several militant compounds in N Waziristan killing 16; another strike 18 June killed 6. Insurgent infighting continued: senior commander of TTP splinter group, Ashiqullah Mehsud, killed 4 June. Sectarian violence continued including 30 Shia pilgrims killed by suicide attacker 9 June near border with Iran. Paramilitary forces reportedly killed at least 30 separatists in Balochistan 5 June.

Pakistan

  |  1 Jun 2014

Unchanged

No tangible progress in govt’s dialogue process with Pakistani Taliban (TTP): army offensive in N Waziristan continued including scores killed late May in army air strikes on suspected militant hideouts, ground fighting. 9 soldiers killed in roadside bombing 8 May. Several militants reported killed in fighting between rival TTP factions, including over 20 killed 6-8 May; key faction linked with Mehsud tribe announced split from TTP late month. Head of Taliban intermediary committee Maulana Samiul Haq 18 May admitted infighting complicating peace talks with govt. Gunmen 7 May killed Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) member Rashid Rehman in Multan; 26 May killed American-Pakistani doctor in Punjab province. 8 killed in Karachi in criminal and militant violence 3 May.

Pakistan

  |  1 May 2014

Unchanged

Pakistani Taliban (TTP) 16 April announced end to ceasefire despite prisoner releases by govt early month; announcement followed outbreak of infighting between rival TTP factions in Waziristan that reportedly killed over 40 early April; both TTP and govt declared continued willingness to hold talks. 1 killed 18 April in attack on govt forces near Peshawar, 3 troops killed in roadside bombing 27 April on border between N and S Waziristan; army 24 April launched airstrikes on militants in Khyber Agency, 37 reported killed. 22 killed in Islamabad bombing 9 April, TTP denied involvement. National Assembly 7 April passed controversial counterterrorism bill, criticised by observers for violating constitution and international law; bill awaiting deliberation in opposition-controlled Senate. Sectarian violence continued with at least 12 killed in Karachi 9 April; at least 3 children killed 28 April in attack on religious school in Karachi; 2 Hazaras killed by gunmen in Quetta 12 April. Military 7 April claimed to have killed 30 Baloch militants; Baloch group next day claimed responsibility for 31 March attack on Quetta-Rawalpindi train that killed 16.

Pakistan

  |  1 Apr 2014

Unchanged

Militant attacks continued as talks between govt and Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) revived: TTP 1 March announced month-long ceasefire; bombs targeting polio vaccination workers’ convoy killed 11 police in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province same day; 3 March suicide attack on Islamabad court killed at least 11, injured 24, TTP splinter group Ahrar-ul-Hind claimed responsibility. Ahrar-ul-Hind bombing 14 March targeting Frontier Corps van in Quetta and market in Peshawar killed at least 18 civilians. Reconstituted govt negotiating team met TTP committee 14 March in FATA: TTP demanded release of 300 non-combatants, creation of free travel “peace zone” in S Waziristan. Govt and TTP held direct talks in N Waziristan 26 March. TTP 30 March announced ceasefire extended beyond 31 March. Interior minister 2 March said govt will halt air strikes on terrorist hideouts; defence minister Khawaja Asif 7 March warned strikes will resume if insurgent attacks continue. Madrasa students in Sindh’s Larkana district 15 March burned Hindu temple after alleged act of blasphemy by Hindu community member. 10 March UN report called for independent investigations of drone attacks in Pakistan. Former President Musharraf formally indicted for high treason 31 March.

Pakistan

  |  1 Mar 2014

Unchanged

Govt 6 Feb restarted talks with militant group Tehreek-e-Taliban (TTP); talks suspended 17 Feb after TTP revealed 23 Frontier Corps (FC) soldiers held since 2010 executed. Govt 18 Feb set unconditional ceasefire as requirement for continuation of negotiations; TTP 21 Feb said prepared to talk if military operations end, 26 Feb fully rejected proposal. At least 100 killed, including civilians, in series of govt airstrikes targeting insurgent bases in N Waziristan and Khyber Agency 20-25 Feb. Senior army officer killed 18 Feb in TTP attack. Taliban leader Mawlawi Abdul Raqib assassinated 17 Feb in Peshawar. Sectarian violence continued: Shia scholar Haji Sardar Ali shot dead by TTP 4 Feb in Peshawar; 9 Shia killed, 50 injured by bomb in Peshawar 5 Feb; gunmen 10 Feb attacked Sufi religious gathering in Karachi, killed 8. Militant extremists 2 Feb issued ultimatum to minority Kalash “kafirs” threatening attacks if they do not convert to Islam. 8 killed in 16 Feb train bombing between Peshawar and Karachi, Baloch radicals claimed responsibility.

Pakistan

  |  1 Feb 2014

Unchanged

Militant attacks intensified: 19 Jan suicide bomb attack on military convoy in Bannu, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, killed at least 20 soldiers and injured 30; suicide attack next to Pakistan's military HQ in Rawalpindi 20 Jan killed at least 14, including 7 soldiers; 3 polio vaccination workers killed in Karachi 21 Jan; at least 3 security personnel killed in Karachi 29 Jan. Awami National Party member killed 12 Jan in Peshawar; 6 killed in attempted attack on prominent PML-N member in Swat same day; senior Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf member shot dead in Lahore 11 Jan; senior counter-terrorism official killed in Taliban attack in Karachi 9 Jan. Growing pressure on PM Sharif to take action against Pakistani Taliban. Pakistani airstrikes in N Waziristan 20-21 Jan killed 40 including 4 Taliban leaders. Sharif 29 Jan reiterated commitment to initiate dialogue with Taliban. Sectarian violence continued in Karachi and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. Gunmen 4 Jan killed 2 senior members of Sunni extremist group Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat in Islamabad. 15-year-old killed 5 Jan in Hangu preventing suicide bomber’s attack on his school in Shia-majority neighbourhood; 29 Shia pilgrims killed 21 Jan after Lashkar-e-Jhangvi suicide bomber drove car with explosives into bus near Quetta; 3 Shias shot dead in Karachi same day in attack claimed by Sunni extremists.

Pakistan

  |  2 Jan 2014

Unchanged

Military officials refuted claims by residents that scores of civilians were killed in ongoing military operations in N Warizistan agency, launched after 18 Dec suicide attack on army checkpost; claimed some 30 militants, mostly Uzbeks, killed. Sectarian violence continued in Karachi, threatens to spread to Lahore: 15 killed 3 Dec, including deputy SG of Shia Majlis-e-Wahdat-e-Muslimeen and 3 members of Sunni Tableeghi Jamaat; Sunni extremist Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ) Punjab head Shamsur Rehman Muawiya shot dead 6 Dec in Lahore; Tehreek Nifaz-e-Fiqa Jafria Shia organisation leader in Multan killed 15 Dec in Lahore. 4 killed by suicide bomber outside Shia mosque in Rawalpindi 18 Dec. 6 Dec Balochistan local elections boycotted by Baloch hardliners; predominately Pashtun Islamist Jamiat Uleme-e-Islam won largest number of votes, followed by independents. Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudry retired 11 Dec, succeeded by Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jilani.

Pakistan

  |  1 Dec 2013

Unchanged

Mullah Fazlullah 7 Nov replaced Hakeemullah Mehsud, killed 1 Nov in U.S. drone strike, as head of Pakistani Taliban; Fazlullah vowed to launch strikes in Punjab, stronghold of ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). Govt condemned attack on Mehsud, lodged formal complaint with U.S. ambassador; Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) threatened to block NATO supplies transiting through Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) province in retaliation. PTI and KPK coalition partner Jamaati-i-Islami leaders and activists began Peshawar sit-in 23 Nov to block NATO supply trucks, disrupting domestic economic activity and Afghanistan-Pakistan trade. As part of anti-drone campaign PTI 27 Nov released name of alleged CIA chief in Pakistan, demanded he be tried. PM Sharif 27 Nov appointed Lt. Gen Raheel Sharif to replace army chief Kayani. Sectarian attacks in Karachi continued, including shooting of 5 Shias 5 Nov and killing of 7 Sunnis 6 Nov. Security operations to combat Karachi violence continued, Sindh police late Oct reported 6,840 suspected criminals arrested since start of operation on 7 Sept; 6 alleged militants killed 13 Nov in clash with police after 3 bombs targeting 2 Shia mosques injured 16. At least 9 killed 15 Nov in riots in Rawalpindi; incident also sparked sectarian violence in Punjab and KPK’s Kohat district 16-17 Nov.

Pakistan

  |  1 Nov 2013

Unchanged

PM Sharif 23 Oct reportedly urged U.S. to end drone strikes in Pakistan during trip to U.S., met with President Obama; condemned U.S. drone strike 31 Oct that killed 3 in N Waziristan. Govt report 31 Oct said only 67 civilians killed in drone strikes prompting scepticism from Amnesty International, Bureau of Investigative Journalists. Sharif 31 Oct said talks with Pakistani Taliban underway. Attacks in 4 provincial capitals 11 Oct including 8 killed in Quetta marketplace, 1 in Lahore marketplace. Khyber Pakhtunkwa (KPK) law minister and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) member Israullah Gandapur among 8 killed 16 Oct in attack in KPK’s Dera Ismail Khan district; PTI said not responsible, reiterated calls for peace talks. Suicide bomber 2 Oct killed 8 at Chaman border crossing with Afghanistan. Remote-controlled bomb targeting police protecting anti-polio workers killed 2, injured 13 in Peshawar 7 Oct. Army chief General Ashraf Parvez Kayani 4 Oct announced retirement end-Nov amid rumours he would retain senior military position.

Pakistan

  |  1 Oct 2013

Unchanged

All-parties conference 9 Sept supported talks with Pakistani Taliban (TTP) but provided no roadmap or specific preconditions; TTP 13 Sept reportedly presented conditions for talks including release of TTP prisoners, imposition of Sharia law and army’s withdrawal from FATA. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) govt 15 Sept announced army’s withdrawal from Swat from mid-Oct; militants 16 Sept killed soldier and 2 army officers including top military officer for Malakand Division; Peshawar High Court 17 Sept ordered KPK not to withdraw troops from Malakand, citing legal problems and possibility militants would return to area. Over 85 killed in Taliban attack on church in Peshawar 22 Sept. Bus blast 27 Sept killed19 govt employees in Peshawar; 41 killed, 100 injured 29 Sept in car bombing in Peshawar. Armed forces 4 Sept launched targeted operation in Karachi to tackle criminal and ethnopolitical violence; operation led by paramilitary Rangers; govt issued list of 450 terrorists, kidnappers, killers and extortionists to be targeted; over 1,500 reportedly arrested in first half of Sept. Sindh govt 12 Sept reshuffled provincial police force, appointed respected senior officer Shahid Hayat as Karachi’s new police chief; 10 Sept arrested Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) member Nadeem Hashmi for alleged involvement in killing of 2 policemen; MQM called strike 11 Sept, shutting down Karachi; Hashmi released 19 Sept. Targeted killings in city continued: gunmen 10-11 Sept killed 11; police officer killed 14 Sept; 6 killed 17 Sept.

Pakistan

  |  1 Sep 2013

Unchanged

Political crisis continued following 31 July resignation of Justice Ibrahim, reportedly in protest at Supreme Court interference in July presidential election: Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) challenged legitimacy of election, call for resignation of Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry. Former president Musharraf officially charged 20 Aug over killing of former PM Benazir Bhutto. Afghanistan President Karzai visited 26 Aug to discuss Afghanistan peace process, urged Pakistan “to facilitate peace talks” with Taliban; PM Sharif said process must be “Afghan-owned and Afghan-led”; no tangible progress made. Govt 13 Aug issued first detailed statement on countering terrorism and extremism: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said govt would prefer dialogue but would not shy away from “all-out war”; also said joint policy to be devised on U.S. drone program; in first televised address to nation, PM Nawaz Sharif 19 Aug reiterated both call for dialogue and military option. Attacks continued in Balochistan including killing of 2 paramilitary personnel 18 Aug. 30 police officers, including Deputy Inspector General of Operations, killed 8 Aug in suicide bombing targeting funeral of senior police official in Quetta; 10 killed in attack 9 Aug. In Karachi, first ever attack on Ismalili Shia sect mosque killed 2 and injured 40 13 Aug; 3 wounded in second attack; Sunni extremist Laskhar-e-Jhangvi suspected. 4 killed 30 Aug by reported U.S. drone strike in North Waziristan, govt condemned attack. Treason conviction against Dr. Shakil Afrisi, who also aided U.S. in hunt for Bin Laden, overturned 29 Aug, retrial ordered.

Pakistan

  |  1 Aug 2013

Unchanged

Al Jazeera 8 July leaked reported 2nd draft of inquiry report into May 2011 U.S. raid and killing of Osama bin Laden; report highly critical of Pakistan military and civilian authorities, noted “culpable negligence and incompetence at almost all levels of govt”. Ruling Pakistan Muslim League-N nominee Mamnoon Hussain elected president by lawmakers in 30 July vote. 9 killed 24 July in Taliban gun and bomb attack on Inter Services Intelligence office in southern town Sukkur. Over 200 inmates freed in Taliban attack on prison in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province 29 July. Political, sectarian, ethnic and gang-related violence continued in Karachi including 2 killed and at least 8 injured 21 July in attack on Awami National Party office. 7 killed 15 July by gunmen in 2 attacks in Quetta. 57 killed, 167 wounded, almost all Shias, in twin suicide attacks in Kurram Agency 26 July; 7 naval personnel killed in attack by Baloch radicals near Iran border 27 July. Clashes with militants continued in Khyber Agency: at least 15 militants and 4 soldiers reportedly killed 19-20 July. Intelligence officials 23 July said plot to assassinate PM Sharif foiled. U.S. Sec State Kerry arrived 31 July for talks on counter-terrorism, Afghanistan.

Pakistan

  |  1 Jul 2013

Unchanged

14th National Assembly held inaugural session 1 June marking Pakistan’s first transfer of power from one elected parliament to another; Sadar Ayaz Sadiq of ruling Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) (PLM-N) elected speaker 3 June. Nawaz Sharif confirmed as PM 5 June; allocated key cabinet posts but kept foreign affairs and defence portfolios for himself. PM Sharif 24 June said govt will bring case against former president Musharraf. Baloch nationalist National Party (NP) chief Abdul Malik confirmed as Balochistan Chief Minister 8 June; Mohammed Khan Achkzai, senior Pashtun-dominated Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP) member, sworn in as governor 13 June. At least 20 killed 30 June in 2 militant attacks targeting security forces in Peshawar and N Waziristan. Militants 15 June destroyed house of first governor general, historical monument and tourist site near Quetta. Same day, bombing of women’s university bus in Quetta killed 14, injured 19; victims taken to medical complex where second attack killed 4 security officers and local deputy commissioner; banned anti-Shia extremist group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi claimed responsibility. At least 28 killed in 2 bombings near Shiite mosque in Quetta 30 June. At least 7 killed, 15 injured including Justice Maqbool Baqir in Karachi bomb attack targeting judge’s convoy 26 June. Islamic militants 22-23 June killed 10 tourists at Nanga Parbat base camp. UK PM Cameron visited 29-30 June, met with PM Sharif to discuss Afghan peace process.


Pakistan

  |  1 Jun 2013

Unchanged

Despite threats and pre-election violence targeting candidates that killed at least 70 and injured over 350, 11 May elections recorded significant turnout at around 55%. Pakistan Muslim League (PLM-N) won with 125 National Assembly seats; Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) 31, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) 28, and MQM 18. PLM-N will form majority govt; with addition of women and minorities reserved seats, PPP will lead opposition with over 40 seats. Parliamentary session called on 1 June, caretaker govt to transfer power to new govt 5 June. EU elections monitors reported 64 deaths on election day, said voting “satisfactory” in 90% of polling stations, but evidence of “serious irregularities” in some Sindh stations. Pakistani Taliban 29 May withdrew peace talks offer after top militant commander Waliur Rehman killed in reported U.S. drone strike; incoming PM Sharif condemned strike. Militant attacks continued including attack on police convoy near Peshawar that killed 7 policemen 24 May. Army 31 May said 19 militants, 3 soldiers killed in military operations in Khyber and Kurram Agencies.

Pakistan

  |  1 May 2013

Deteriorated

Campaigning continued despite several militant attacks on 3 mainstream moderate parties – Awami National Party (ANP), Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) – killing more than 60. Attacks included 19 killed 16 April in bombing of ANP meeting in Peshawar; 4 killed 23 April, 5 killed 25 April by bomb attacks near MQM election offices in Karachi; bombs targeting politicians’ offices in Kohat and Peshawar 27 April killed 9. Targeted killings continued throughout month in Karachi. 6 killed, over 30 wounded in suicide bombing in Quetta 23 April; banned Sunni extremist group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi claimed responsibility. Early April disqualification of scores of electoral candidates criticised by professional bodies, trade unions and civil society; most disqualifications overturned. Police 24 April said bomb defused outside house where former president Musharraf under arrest since 20 April for sacking of judges in 2007; court 30 April extended Musharraf’s house arrest to 14 May for role in 2007 assassination of former PM Bhutto. High Court 30 April banned Musharraf from public office for life. Caretaker govt 22 April told Supreme Court it would not bring treason charges against Musharraf. Musharraf 12 April admitted his govt agreed to several U.S. drone strikes in first public acknowledgment of consent by former or serving senior official. Military 9 April launched operation to regain control of Tirah valley in Khyber Agency following displacement of over 48,000 by fighting between rival militant groups.

Pakistan

  |  1 Apr 2013

Unchanged

President Zardari 20 March announced general elections to be held 11 May; Election Commission 24 March nominated former Balochistan High Court chief justice Mir Hazar Khan Khoso as caretaker PM. Election campaigning began late month: Imran Khan 23 March held large rally in Lahore; ex-president Musharaf 24 March returned to Karachi after 4 year self-imposed exile; Nawaz Sharif held major rally in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Mansera district 25 March. 45 killed, some 150 injured 3 March by bomb in Karachi Shia neighbourhood; thousands of protestors 4 March demanded govt action against sectarian militant groups. Interior Minister Rehamn Malik said 3 members of banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) militant group and Taliban militant arrested in connection with attack. Police 18 March arrested LeJ leader Abdul Hayee, accused of 2002 abduction and murder of U.S. journalist Daniel Pearl and other crimes. 4 killed, 20 injured 9 March in attack on Peshawar mosque. Suicide attack 18 March killed 4 in Peshawar courtroom; suicide bomber targeting police convoy killed 10 in Peshawar 29 March. Some 180 houses in mostly Christian neighbourhood of Lahore burned by mob 9 March. National Assembly’s standing committee on human rights 14 March summoned Punjab police inspector general over police’s failure to prevent incident; Punjab govt announced investigation. Female school teacher shot dead 26 March in Khyber region. 1 killed, 6 injured 30 March in attack on Karachi school. UN Special Rapporteur Emmerson 15 March said Pakistan govt has no agreement with U.S. over use of drones in FATA, drone use violates sovereignty.

Pakistan

  |  1 Mar 2013

Unchanged

Bomb targeting Hazara Shiites in Quetta city 16 Feb killed over 90; banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) extremist group claimed responsibility; leader Malik Ishaq arrested 22 Feb in targeted security operation against militants of LeJ and its parent party Ahle Sunnat Waljamaas (ASWJ, the renamed banned Sipah-e-Sahaba). Shiites 17-19 Feb protested attack, govt inaction in main cities. At least 4 killed 25-26 Feb in Karachi violence prompting protests demanding action. Bomb attack 21 Feb killed 1, injured 12 in Peshawar, NW. Policeman killed, 2 injured 23 Feb in militant ambush in Rashakai, east of Peshawar. Blasphemy case against Sherry Rehman, ambassador to U.S., registered by Supreme Court late Feb. Policeman escorting polio vaccination team shot dead 26 Feb.

Pakistan

  |  1 Feb 2013

Unchanged

Supreme Court 15 Jan ordered arrest of PM Ashraf and others involved in corruption cases; order coincided with Islamabad rally, held by a Pakistan Canadian cleric-cum-political leader, calling for dissolution of parliament and election commission, establishment of caretaker govt with input from military and judiciary; rally sparked suspicions military, with judiciary’s support, conspiring to subvert democratic transition before elections. 115 killed 10 Jan in 3 suicide bomb attacks in Quetta; Sunni extremist group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi claimed responsibility. At least 18, including 3 Sunni clerics, killed 30-31 Jan in Karachi in wave of targeted killings. Victims’ families called for dismissal of provincial govt; govt imposed governor’s rule, removing provincial govt, suspending provincial parliament and awarding policing powers to paramilitary Frontier Corps (FC) accused of extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances. FC reportedly using new powers to target Baloch dissidents. Politicians Manzar Imam and Mian Taimur shot dead 17 Jan and 23 Jan respectively in Karachi; over 9 others reportedly shot dead 22-23 Jan. Govt forces 29 Jan claimed 33 militants killed in air strikes in Khyber and Orkzai agencies. Clashes between Taliban and pro-govt militia erupted in Khyber agency 25 Jan; some 52 reported killed. 5 female teachers, 2 health workers killed 1 Jan in Swabi, reportedly for links with vaccination scheme; 2 polio vaccination workers killed 31 Jan by landmine in Kurram. 22 killed 10 Jan in suicide bombing in Mingora, Swat valley. U.S. drone strike 3 Jan killed Millah Nazir, top pro-military Taliban commander in S Waziristan.

Pakistan

  |  30 Dec 2012

Unchanged

9 workers conducting UN-backed polio immunisation drive shot dead 17-19 Dec, prompting UN and govt to suspend vaccinations in Sindh and Khyber provinces. Car bomb targeting local politician 17 Dec killed at least 17, wounded dozens in Jamrud, Khyber tribal agency. Taliban attack on Peshawar airport 15-16 Dec left at least 15 dead, including 5 militants killed in attack and further 5 killed in police raid on nearby hideout. Taliban 27 Dec attacked 3 checkpoints near Peshawar, kidnapped and killed at least 21 security personnel. Pakistan Taliban leader 28 Dec said group willing to negotiate with govt, would not disarm. At least 6 killed, 12 injured 29 Dec in Karachi bus bombing; at least 19 killed 30 Dec in bomb attack on bus in Balochistan. Over 200,000 gathered at former PM Benazir Bhutto’s mausoleum to mark 5-year anniversary of assassination; son Bilawal Bhutto Zardari gave keynote speech promising to defend Pakistani democracy. Media 19 Dec reported Pakistan building domestic drone fleet. At 20 Dec UNSC meeting, Pakistan reaffirmed support for Afghan-led peace process in Afghanistan, emphasised need for tangible steps by stakeholders.

Pakistan

  |  1 Dec 2012

Unchanged

Govt 14 Nov announced release of several detained Taliban leaders, reportedly including former regime officials, to facilitate dialogue between Afghan govt and Taliban; govt 30 Nov agreed to further releases during talks on bilateral cooperation with Afghan FM Zalmai Rassoul. Court 14 Nov dismissed blasphemy case against teenage Christian girl in Islamabad. Over 80 killed in first half of month in sectarian, ethnic and political violence in Karachi. Police arrested 4 members of banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi group suspected of planning attack on Karachi Shia population; bombing of Shia mosque 18 Nov killed 3, injured 14. 23 killed, 62 wounded 22 Nov in attack on Shia procession in Rawalpindi. 7 killed 24 Nov, at least 5 killed, 90 wounded 25 Nov near Shia procession in Dera Ismail Khan, NW. Prominent militant commander Maulvi Nazir, believed to have non-aggression pact with Pakistan army, escaped suicide bomb attack 29 Nov in South Waziristan, 7 others killed; hours later U.S. drone strike killed 3 suspected militants near attack site.

Pakistan

  |  1 Nov 2012

Unchanged

Teenage activist Malala Yousafzai shot 9 Oct in Mingora, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, 2 others wounded; Maulana Fazlullah-led Pakistan Taliban faction claimed responsibility. Yousafzai airlifted to UK for medical treatment. President Zardari 22 Oct cautioned against military action against Pakistan Taliban. Interior Minister Rehman Malik early Oct said Pakistan had no objection to using drones against militants, but called for U.S. to agree to common strategy, share drone technology.

Pakistan

  |  1 Oct 2012

Unchanged

Following several protests against anti-Islam film, govt-authorised 21 Sept “peaceful pro-Islam” demonstration turned violent: 21 killed, over 200 injured as protesters, spearheaded by activists from radical Islamist and banned jihadi parties, clashed with police. Railway Minister Ghulam Bilour 22 Sept offered bounty for death of film maker; govt and Bilour’s Awami National Party condemned offer. In govt reversal, PM Ashraf 18 Sept agreed to Supreme Court demands govt approach Swiss authorities to reopen graft case against President Zardari; Supreme Court rejected first two versions of letter drafted by Justice Minister, threatened to charge Ashraf with contempt if drafting requirements not met by 5 Oct. Parliamentary Committee on National Security 24 Sept decided to stop allowing UN groups to visit to discuss “sensitive issues” following controversial visit by UN working group on enforced disappearances. 14 killed 16 Sept by roadside bomb in Swat Valley; 2 killed, 19 wounded 3 Sept in bomb attack on U.S. govt vehicle in Peshawar; 8 civilians killed, 27 wounded in blast targeting Pakistani military vehicle, Peshawar. 12 Shiites killed, 45 injured 10 Sept in market bombing in Kurram region. U.S. announced addition of Haqqani Network to roster of designated global terrorist organisations.

Pakistan

  |  1 Sep 2012

Unchanged

Supreme Court 27 Aug gave PM Ashraf until 18 Sept to request re-opening of money laundering case against President Zardari. 8 soldiers, 10 militants killed 29 Aug in S Waziristan clashes; 42 militants, 8 security personnel killed 24-28 Aug in military operation Bajaur agency. In Quetta: 5 security personnel killed 8 Aug in suicide attack; 5 soldiers killed 18 Aug in checkpoint bombing; 3 killed 27 Aug in attack on Shia Hazaras. 8 militants, 1 soldier killed 16 Aug in attack on major air base at Kamra, Punjab province. 120 militants, 5 soldiers killed 14 Aug in Orakzai. 8 insurgents killed 27 Aug in attack on Kurram agency checkpoint. 31 militants, 3 security personnel, 2 peace committee members killed 27 Aug in operations to clear Batwa village, Bajaur agency. Gunmen 16 Aug killed 25 Shia bus passengers near Mansehra, Khyber region; bomb attack on bus carrying Shia students killed one in Karachi, 17 Aug; 6 and 10 killed in Karachi 17, 28 Aug respectively. NATO 25 Aug said senior Pakistan Taliban commander Mullah Dadullah killed in Afghanistan airstrike in Kunar along with 12 other suspected militants. 10 suspected militants killed 19 Aug, 2 killed 21 Aug in drone strikes, N Waziristan. Interior Minister Rehman Malik early Aug said Pakistani Taliban likely receiving support from Afghanistan govt members. Foreign Ministry 10 Aug confirmed govt in talks with Afghanistan on release of key Taliban leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradr, arrested 2010. Up to 600 Christians fled community in Islamabad fearing retaliation following arrest of minor Christian girl for blasphemy. Court 31 Aug jailed for 2 weeks extremist Lashkar-e-Jhangvi leader Malik Ishaq following arrest for inciting sectarian violence.

Pakistan

  |  1 Aug 2012

Unchanged

Govt early July reopened NATO supply routes to Afghanistan following U.S. apology for Nov 2011 U.S. airstrike that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers, 31 July signed deal with NATO to allow convoys until Aug 2015. Defence of Pakistan coalition 8 July began protest march from Lahore to Islamabad; gunmen 24 July fired on NATO supply convoy in Khyber, killed driver, wounded 2. Supreme Court 25 July granted new PM Ashraf additional 2 weeks to request reopening of corruption case against President Zardari. Kabul late July accused military of unprovoked cross-border shelling, killing 7 civilians; Pakistan denied claim, said shelling in response to Afghan militant attack; ISAF 25 July condemned shelling. 10 killed 24 July in drone strike, N Waziristan. 11 killed 26 July in bomb attack on market, Bajur tribal area. At least 9 killed, 16 wounded 21 July in suicide bomb attack on anti-Taliban militant commander’s compound, Kurram tribal district. FM Jilani met with Indian counterpart 4-5 July to discuss terrorism, Kashmir; Jilani rejected renewed accusations of Pakistan state agency in 2008 Mumbai attacks.

Pakistan

  |  1 Jul 2012

Deteriorated
Month saw significant political turmoil: Supreme Court 19 June disqualified PM Yousuf Gilani from office following contempt of court conviction for refusal to request reopening of corruption case against President Zardari, 27 June demanded new PM Raja Ashraf request reopening of case; Special Anti-Narcotics court 21 June issued arrest warrant against nominated successor Makhdoom Shahabuddin on charges filed by military-dominated Anti-Narcotics Force. Son of Supreme Court Justice Chaudhry, Arslan Iftikhar, accused 12 June of blackmail by businessman Malik Riaz; Supreme Court 13 June initiated contempt of court proceedings against Riaz. French man suspected of being “key al-Qaeda operative” arrested 20 June near Iran border. Violent riots over power cuts erupted mid-month across country. Controversial Commission investigating “memogate” scandal involving former ambassador to U.S. Haqqani 12 June submitted report to Supreme Court, “incontrovertibly established” memo authentic, said Haqqani’s “loyalties not with Pakistan”. 26 killed 16 June by car-bomb in Khyber district. Suspected Sunni militants 27 June killed 15 Shiite bus passengers, SW. Military 26 June said Afghanistan militants crossed border, killed 13 Pakistan troops in NW. 7 soldiers killed 27 June by roadside bomb, NW. U.S. drone strikes continued throughout month.

Pakistan

  |  1 Jun 2012

Deteriorated

President Zardari attended NATO summit 20-22 May, urged “permanent solution” to U.S. drone strikes: 4 killed 23 May, 10 killed 24 May, 4 killed 26 May, 12 killed 29 May in reported drone strikes, North Waziristan. Tensions with U.S. deepened after tribal court sentenced doctor who helped CIA find Bin Laden to 33 years in prison for, according to leaked court document, providing medical care to banned terror groups; U.S. Secretary of State Clinton 24 May said move “unjust and unwarranted”. NATO supply lines remained closed, U.S. rejected demand for $5,000 per container. Violence in Karachi continued: at least 9 killed, 30 wounded 22 May when gunmen opened fire on political rally, sparking riots, gunfights; 9 killed, including senior police officer, in targeted attacks 9 May, following court-martial of 3 navy officers for “negligence” in connection with 2011 Taliban attack on Karachi Naval base. 3 killed 28 May in bombing targeting police, Quetta.  20 killed 4 May, 9 soldiers killed 5 May, further 2 killed 28 May in militant attacks in tribal belt. Govt 10 May announced successful nuclear-capable short-range missile test; 31 May conducted medium-range missile test. Speaker of national assembly 24 May refused to disqualify PM Gilani over contempt conviction; opposition Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf parties 28 May filed petitions with Supreme Court challenging decision. National conference of all political parties, hosted by Supreme Court Bar Association 25 May, called for end of military operations, withdrawal of military and paramilitary troops from Balochistan.

Pakistan

  |  1 May 2012

Deteriorated

Supreme Court 26 April convicted PM Gilani of contempt of court, PM refused to step down, govt said will file appeal. Lahore station bomb blast 24 April killed 4; 8 Hazara Shias killed 15 April in sectarian attacks, Quetta. Following spate of politically and ethnically motivated targeted killings in Karachi, that claimed over 25 lives early April, Interior Minister Rehman Malik 23 April alleged Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), Pakistan Peoples’ Party (PPP) and Awami National Party (ANP) activists involved in corruption, extortion. Parliament early April unanimously approved non-binding resolution to end drone strikes, ban U.S. intelligence operations and unilateral U.S. military operations; first U.S. drone in a month killed 4 al-Qaeda linked fighters in N Waziristan 29 April, attack condemned by govt. High-level talks between U.S. and Pakistan 27 April failed to repair ties, reach agreement on re-opening NATO supply routes. Govt 25 April tested ballistic missile following 19 April long-range missile launch by India.

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