Pakistan Taliban says no shift to Syria

2013-07-16 15:52
Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) chief Maulvi Faqir Mohammad as he addresses a gathering in the Bajur tribal region. (File, AFP)

Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) chief Maulvi Faqir Mohammad as he addresses a gathering in the Bajur tribal region. (File, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

Peshawar - The Pakistani Taliban on Tuesday rejected suggestions they were sending fighters to Syria, saying some have gone there independently but the movement's focus remained in Pakistan.

Taliban sources said some militants, mainly Arabs and Central Asians, had gone to fight the forces of President Bashar Assad, but a senior leader dismissed reports of them setting up camps in Syria.

The lawless tribal areas of northwest Pakistan along the Afghan border have long been a magnet for militants from across the Muslim world eager to fight US-led Nato forces in Afghanistan.

But since the uprising against Assad began in March 2011, foreign jihadists have flocked to Syria, where disparate rebel groups are seeking his downfall.

Some media reports say scores of Pakistani Taliban are among them and they have set up camps in Syria.

A senior commander who sits on the shura or ruling council of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) told AFP there was no tactical shift and no decision had been made to send forces to Syria.

'Great evil is in Afghanistan'


"There is no reality in these reports, we have far better targets in the region, Nato troops headed by the Americans are present in Afghanistan," he said on condition of anonymity.

"We are already in a war with Pakistani troops. We support the mujahideen's struggle in Syria but in our opinion, we have a lot more to do here in Pakistan and Afghanistan."

The TTP is an umbrella group for numerous factions trying to bring down the Pakistani state and impose sharia law. It has ties to the Afghan Taliban and al-Qaeda.

"The great evil [America] is here in Afghanistan, troops from 30 kafir [non-believer] countries are attacking innocent people in Afghanistan, so Bashar Assad is not that important for us," the TTP commander said.

"Obama is the big evil, Americans are a much bigger evil for us. The Taliban shura has never discussed sending mujahideen to Syria."

Another mid-ranking TTP commander in Miranshah, the main town of North Waziristan tribal district which is a hotbed of Taliban and al-Qaeda activity, said some fighters had gone to Syria "in a personal capacity".

100 000 killed

A third senior TTP cadre said those who went were mostly Arabs, Uzbeks and Chechens.

More than 100 000 people have been killed since the uprising against Assad erupted, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

Ismail, an Arab fighter from al-Qaeda, told AFP in northwest Pakistan that he planned to join the fight against Assad.

"I am going to Syria in the next few days, my family will stay here," he said.

"Our mujahideen are going not only to Syria but also to Lebanon, Egypt and other Arab countries."

Read more on:    al-qaeda  |  nato  |  bashar assad  |  syria  |  syria conflict  |  uprisings
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
4 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Pre-order your iPhone 6 at kalahari.com

Hurry and pre-order your own iPhone 6 now at SA’s favourite online store!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

Mind blow low prices on electronics

Get either the Prestigio multiphone or Proline tablet 7” tablet for only R699. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off Barbie toys

Save 30% on all Barbie toys and accessories. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Baby extravanganza month at kalahari.com

Celebrate baby month with a wide range of awesome baby products. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Mind power dominates and can help you to uncover things from a deeper level, but it can also create entanglements if you let your...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.