India-Pakistan: Gangsters Rule the Borders

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June 14, 2006: One of the major criminal activities in Pakistan is people smuggling. To give an idea of the scope of this, consider that in the last two years, 126,482 Pakistanis have been expelled from countries they had been smuggled into. Most of the people smuggled, don't get caught and returned to Pakistan. The smugglers make $10,000 or more from each person they sneak into a country in Europe or North America. In the same period, 3,329 people were arrested and charged with people smuggling. While most of the illegal migrants are "economic refugees," some are criminals or terrorists. The smugglers don't much care about that, not when the people smuggling business is generating over a billion dollars a year for them.

Also in Pakistan, police arrested six Islamic terrorists, for plotting to kill Shia Moslems. The Sunni terrorists belonged to a group affiliated with al Qaeda, which considers Shia to be heretics.

June 13, 2006: In Indian Kashmir, five Islamic terrorists were killed. In southwest Pakistan, five Baluchi tribal rebels were killed by police.

June 12, 2006: Near the Afghan border, in Baluchistan, police raids seized eight mobile drug labs (for turning poppy paste into various drugs), seizing two tons of morphine, 22 pounds of heroin, raw materials, weapons and documents. No one was arrested, as the staff of the labs had fled back into Afghanistan. Pakistan has driven most of the drug gangs into Afghanistan by the end of the 1990s, where the Taliban was happy to tolerate them as long as the gangs paid hefty "taxes" in order to be left alone. But in the last two years, anti-drug operations in Afghanistan has driven some of the drug operations back into Pakistan. Both Pakistan and Afghanistan have a growing drug addiction problem, as well as more crime in general because of the powerful drug gangs fighting, and bribing, the police. About a third of the heroin produced in Afghanistan, is moved into Pakistan, for sale, or movement into other countries. In the provincial capital of Baluchistan, a bomb went off in a market, killing five and wounding 17.

In Indian Kashmir, Islamic terrorists threw grenades into a bus station, and a rest camp for Hindu pilgrims. Ten civilians died. There were also riots by thousands of Moslems, claiming that Indian troops had desecrated a Mosque. Several rioters were killed, and many more wounded.

June 11, 2006: In southwest Pakistan, Baluchi tribal rebels attacked a police base, but were repulsed, losing five dead and eleven wounded. Meanwhile, to the north, near the Khyber Pass, several hundred armed members of the Lashkar Islami ( Army of Islam) briefly occupied the town of Bara, but left when security forces approached. Officials in Bara said it was all a misunderstanding, as the Lashkar Islami had been called in to help restore order in the town, which had been suffering from the violent side effects of tribal politics.

June 10, 2006: In southwest Pakistan, Baluchi tribal rebels blew up three gas pipelines, cutting off customers in the provincial capital. At the same time, police found and removed seven bombs that were planted by electricity transmission towers. To the north, in North Waziristan, troops raided a Taliban hideout near the Afghan border, and killed at least twenty of the rebels.

June 9, 2006: In central India, at least 13 Maoist rebels were killed in several battles with police. At least five Maoists were arrested. In the worst hit state, Chhattisgarh, nearly 200 people have died in Maoist related violence so far this year. About half of Chhattisgarh is affected by the Maoist operations and violence.

 

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