India-Pakistan: Bin Laden Support Network Broken Up

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September 29, 2005: Pakistani military commanders believe that Osama Bin Laden is hiding out along the Afghan border, with only about a dozen followers. The army believes they have broken up bin Laden's support network, and forced the al Qaeda leader to hide in remote villages, and communicate only via courier. The army would not give more details, which is understandable as that would provide bin Laden supporters with information about how, and to what extent, the army has penetrated the pro-bin Laden groups.

Maoist rebels in India are openly warning the population that anyone who helps the army or police hunting Maoists, will be killed. The Maoists are escalating their rebellion, which is widespread, but weak. For over a decade, the Maoists were considered bandits, living off crime. But now they are using terror attacks to expand their power, killing police and civilians. There are thought to be no more than 4,000 armed Maoists in all of India (operating in areas with a total population of several hundred million.)

September 28, 2005: In Pakistan, a senior leader of an Islamic terror group was arrested. Asif Chotu, heads the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, a Sunni Moslem group that is mainly interested in killing Shia Moslems, whom many Sunnis consider heretics. Chotu quickly gave up some of his close associates. Over 4,000 Pakistanis have died in 25 years of this Sunni-Shia violence. This has gotten worse in the last few years as Islamic radicalism has increased in popularity.

Maoists destroyed a police station under construction in eastern India. Yesterday, Maoists also set off a bomb near a railroad station.

September 26, 2005: In northwest Pakistan, near the Afghan border, troops discovered a huge cache of weapons. The owner of the property where the weapons were found admitted they were his, and said he was waiting for the right time to sell them. The weapons dated from the 1980s war in Afghanistan against the Russians. Some of the several hundred mortars and heavy machine-guns were still in good condition, but the surface-to-air missiles, including several American Stingers, were useless (dead batteries and decayed propellant).

September 22, 2005: Two bombs went off in Lahore, Pakistan, killing six and wounding over twenty. Islamic terrorists are suspected.

 

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