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CrisisWatch Pakistan

Unchanged Situation

Targeted killings and attacks continued in Balochistan province in west, including 7 March killing of police official guarding Hazara neighbourhood in Quetta, and 15 March bomb in Qila Saifullah district which killed seven people. In east, suicide attack on police checkpoint in Lahore killed six policemen 14 March. Amid broader push against terror financing and money laundering, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa authorities mid-March seized assets and closed properties belonging to Jamaat-ud-Dawa (charity front of radical group anti-India Lashkar-e-Tayyaba). Balochistan police 13 March registered criminal cases against Manzoor Pashteen, leader of Pashtun Tahaffuz (protection) movement which began sit-ins in Jan against extrajudicial killings and has developed into major nonviolent civil society campaign; group organiser Aftab Mehsud found dead in Dera Ismail Khan late Feb. Police 21 March arrested suspended superintendent wanted for 13 Jan killing which triggered sit-ins. Ahead of 3 March indirect senate elections, Election Commission 28 March removed former PM Nawaz Sharif as president of ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party following Supreme Court’s 21 Feb ruling that he could not continue as party president after his July 2017 disqualification from office of PM; court’s judgement widely criticised by legal community as judicial overreach. PML-N selected Sharif’s brother and Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif as party president. PML-N won fifteen seats in 3 March elections overtaking Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) as largest party in senate, though PML-N’s candidates were officially elected as independents in line with Electoral Commission ruling.

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Reports & Briefings

In The News

23 Feb 2017
The recent wave of attacks within Pakistan is the result of Pakistan’s historical reliance on militant groups to promote its foreign policy agenda, which seems to be biting the country now. The World Weekly

Timor Sharan

Former Senior Analyst, Afghanistan
25 Jul 2016
With the reestablishment of Afghanistan’s national air force, we’re seeing the Taliban being driven into the mountains more than previously. RFI

Timor Sharan

Former Senior Analyst, Afghanistan

Latest Updates

Video / Asia

Addressing Security Concerns to Advance Gender Equality in Pakistan

Addressing security concerns in Pakistan is vital for creating a more gender equal society. In this video, Crisis Group's South Asia Project Director Samina Ahmed highlights the need for measures geared toward enabling women to become more economically independent, such as safer public transport and a more gender-sensitive police force.

Report / Asia

Winning the War on Polio in Pakistan

Pakistan remains the greatest impediment to a polio-free world. The link between the disease and Islamist anti-immunisation campaigns is clear but without an appropriate political response. The authorities must tackle extremist networks, step up health services, and make sure that health workers are safe.

Op-Ed / Asia

Update on Pakistan's Polio War: Some Ground Gained but Victory Not Yet in Sight

As the world marks Polio Day today, Pakistan remains the greatest impediment to a polio-free world.

Originally published in Lowy Interpreter

Report / Asia

Revisiting Counter-terrorism Strategies in Pakistan: Opportunities and Pitfalls

Pakistan’s six-month-old counter-terrorism strategy has failed to end the operations of violent jihadi groups, while military-led measures continue to undermine the civilian government. A winning strategy will have to include structural and governance reform, both to stop jihadis exploiting the absence of rule of law and to address the root causes of extremist violence.

Also available in 简体中文

Our People

Zaib Barlas

Former Operations Manager, Pakistan