Islamabad, August 31(ANI): Abdul Shakoor Turkistani, a Chinese Uyghur, has taken control of the overall command of foreign militants in Pakistan's tribal region.
Turkistani is known for promoting "Islamic extremism", and belongs to the Chinese Uyghur, a banned group actively operating in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region in China, Asia Times Online reports.
Turkistani has always been on good terms with the major Pakistani Taliban outfits, and is also believed to have played a key role in the formation of the Itehad-e-Shur-e-Mujahideen in 2009 (Union of the Consultative Council of Mujahideen) comprising militant groups focused on fighting in Afghanistan, the report said.
The Chinese government recently deployed at least 200,000 security personnel to pursue Uyghurs in the region following a clash between Uyghurs and the Chinese security personnel that left at least 23 Uyghurs dead in Hotan city last month.
Meanwhile, three major factions of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) are strengthening their alliance, with an aim to launch joint operations in Afghanistan against coalition forces, to hunt down spotters for drones and to adopt a collective strategy to confront any military adventures by the Pakistan Government in restive North Waziristan.
Well-placed Taliban sources told Asia Times Online that the decision was made at a recent meeting of members of the TTP and factions led by Hafiz Gul Bahadur and Mullah Nazeer in a remote area on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. The meeting was overseen by the powerful Haqqani network and al-Qaeda, the sources added.
Lashkar-e-Khorasan (Army of the Khorasan), which consists of six members from each group and operates under the aegis of Bahadur, has been specifically formed to monitor drone spies in South Waziristan and North Waziristan, the report said.
The Afghan Taliban have also become more active in Pakistan's border areas, making more alliances with the TTP for increased attacks against coalition forces in Afghanistan and for joint operations against Pakistani security forces. (ANI)