By Tahir Khan
The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan Jamaatul Ahrar (TTP-JuA) has killed an Afghan Taliban commander in eastern Afghanistan’s Kunar Province, where the banned group is believed to have its basis, sources said on Saturday. Ubaid, who was killed two days ago, was the second Afghan Taliban commander killed by the TTP-JuA in Kunar’s Sarkano district in 10 days, a source told Daily Times.
Two other sympathisers of the Afghan Taliban were also killed in Lal Pura area of Nangarhar province, bordering Pakistan. Lal Pura is thought to be the headquarters of Ahrar, which is blamed for dozens of deadliest attacks in Pakistan. Last week the Pakistani armed group allegedly killed an Afghan Taliban local leader Zabita Jalal that caused tension between the two sides in the area.
Zabta Jalil was an Afghan Taliban leader from Kunar who had been involved in clashes with Ahrar militants for long time. He was wanted to the Americans and Afghan government and the government forces had carried out several operations against him but failed to capture him, a militant leader said.
Afghan Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid evaded comments and said he will try to seek information when a query was posted in his official WhatsApp. The TTP-JA spokesman did not reply to an email. The sources said the Ahrar fighters had also been involved in clashes with a famous Afghan Taliban commander Qari Ziaur Rehman in Kunar in recent weeks, but there was no casualty. However, the clashes caused serious tensions between the two sides which prompted mediation by locals as they were concerned about threats to their security.
Daily Times has learnt that the TTP JA leader Abdu Wali alias Omar Khalid Khorasani’s relationship had always been tense with the Afghan Taliban in Nangarhar and Kunar and both had been involved in attacks on each other. Both lost fighters including the brother of a key commander Haji Abdul Rahim of the Afghan Taliban.
He had also previously associated with Omar Khalid Khorasani, but later parted ways with him because of differences. Militant sources said that Afghan Taliban took two Ahrar fighters after Ahrar killed two supporters of the Afghan Taliban in Lal Pura district of Nangarhar.
A jirga or council has been constituted to secure the release of the two hostages and to reduce tension. However, both are still in the custody of the Afghan Taliban. A Pakistani militant commander, who is aware of the tense relations between the TTP JA and the Afghan Taliban, said that Ahrar wanted to establish its control in some of the border regions.
“Ahrar also does not accept the policies of the Afghan Taliban but other groups follow the Afghan Taliban,” a militant leader said when asked about the Ahrar’s conflict with the Afghan Taliban. The JuA was launched in 2014 by several leaders of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan from Mohmand tribal region after internal differences surfaced over the leadership and policies. Omar Khalid Khorasani, who belongs to Mohmand agency, is leading the group.
In April, Ehsanullah Ehsan, the former spokesman for the JuA surrendered to the security forces had disclosed in a video that many Pakistani militants operate from the Afghan side of the border.
‘Courtesy Daily Times’.