Islamabad: Faction and sub-factions within militant forces are battling each other and opening up “new threats and new risks of even greater violence”, said a Pakistani daily Monday.
An editorial in the News International said it was a fallacy to think of the militant forces who command the north of Pakistan as a homogenous force.
“Of late, it is becoming clearer that they are in fact divided into factions and sub-factions, some quite bitterly opposed to each other. This opens up new threats and new risks of even greater violence as a result of infighting,” it said.
The daily cited the example of the narrow escape of Mullah Nazir, a powerful militant commander, who faced an assassination bid by a suicide bomber in South Waziristan.
Nazir, closely linked to the North Waziristan Gul Bahadur group and also the Haqqani network, believes the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), commanded by Hakimullah Mehsud was responsible for the attack.
“Tribal tensions are also involved…Similar differences are thought to have led to the attack, apparently by the TTP, on a convoy of former Jamaat-e-Islami leader, Qazi Hussain Ahmed, in the Mohmand Agency,” said the editorial.
The daily said that right now “the divides we are seeing opens up more dangers, and it is important that as a nation we recognise that all militant forces are essentially dangerous, and threaten to add further dimensions of violence to the country”.
“But it must be explored whether these divisions in militant ranks open up any window of opportunity for our security establishment for talks to negotiate peace and make allies. With the violence in Balochistan and Karachi; an economy that is hardly stable; and threats of terrorist attacks already a reality, Pakistan cannot afford more chaos as a result of differences within these militant groups,” it added.