Pakistan claims killing dozens of Afghan-based ‘terrorists’ in recent operations

Pakistan claims killing dozens of Afghan-based ‘terrorists’ in recent operations

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Pakistan claims killing dozens of Afghan-based ‘terrorists’ in recent operations

Pakistan’s military said Wednesday that its operations against a recent surge in terrorist attacks from Afghanistan, and cross-border militant infiltration attempts, have resulted in the killings of nearly 30 “terrorists” in the last month.

The announcement came a day after a U.S. research group said in a report that “Afghanistan has become a breeding ground for terrorist activities” since the Taliban regained power in 2021.

While sharing details of its ongoing counterterrorism actions, the Pakistani military said it was focused on parts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Baluchistan border provinces. It noted that one of the operations a week ago also led to the death of an army major.

“Of late, Pakistan has witnessed a surge in terrorist incidents orchestrated from Afghan soil, wherein terrorists from Afghanistan attempt to infiltrate through the Pakistan-Afghanistan border and target security forces as well as innocent civilians,” the statement said.

Islamabad renewed its call for Kabul “to ensure effective border management” on the Afghan side, saying the Taliban government “is expected to fulfill its obligations and deny the use of Afghan soil by terrorists for perpetuating acts of terrorism against Pakistan.”

There was no immediate reaction from de facto Afghan authorities to Pakistan’s assertions. The Taliban have rejected previous such allegations, saying they are not allowing anyone to use Afghan territory to threaten neighboring countries or beyond.

Pakistan maintains that fugitive commanders and combatants of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, or TTP, a designated global terrorist group, are using havens in Afghanistan to launch deadly cross-border attacks against Pakistanis, including security forces.

The Washington-based Centre for a New American Security released its report Tuesday, saying the TTP and other regional militant groups “are active and face few constraints on their activities from the Taliban—with whom they share core ideological beliefs.”

The study warned that terrorist threats emanating from Afghanistan “are intensifying and an Afghan-based Islamic State affiliate, the Islamic State-Khorasan, or IS-K, “constitutes the main international concern.”

It also cited a recent United Nations report that highlighted the Taliban’s close ties to al-Qaida operatives in Afghanistan, noting that “al-Qaida leaders are now part of the Taliban’s administrative structure and are constructing their own training camps in the country.”

On May 10, the United States hosted a bilateral counterterrorism dialogue with Pakistan, where the two sides agreed to intensify collaboration in the fight against the TTP and IS-K.

A post-meeting joint statement said the two countries “recognize that a partnership to counter” the TTP and IS-K and other regional terrorist groups “will advance security in the region and help “address transnational terrorism threats.”