22 Taliban Leaders meet: Pick Hakimulla Mehsud new Pakistan Taliban Leader

In this picture taken on November 26, 2008, Pakistani Taliban commander Hakimullah Mehsud addresses a group of media representatives in the Mamouzai area of Orakzai Agency. — AFP

In this picture taken on November 26, 2008, Pakistani Taliban commander Hakimullah Mehsud addresses a group of media representatives in the Mamouzai area of Orakzai Agency. — AFP

Baitullah Mehsud is dead (U.S. claims) or severely wounded and ill (Taliban claims) but a Taliban Shura (leaders meeting) was held by at least 22 leaders for two days. Hakimulla Mehsud is the new leader of Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the official groups title that we call the Pakistan Taliban. Hakimulla was a close aide and friend of Baitullah’s. This news is bigger than the Afghanistan Elections in the press in Central Asia.

Today, Dawn.com reports this story:

PESHAWAR: The Pakistani Taliban have appointed a successor to their feared leader believed to have been killed in a US missile strike, a militant commander said Saturday.

American and Pakistani officials believe Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) chief Baitullah Mehsud was killed earlier this month in a missile attack by US drone aircraft in the lawless South Waziristan tribal district bordering Afghanistan.

Taliban commanders say Mehsud survived but is seriously ill.

TTP deputy and battle-hardened former teacher Maulvi Faqir Mohammad, who announced on Wednesday that he had taken over as acting chief of the group, said a Taliban shura, or council, had made the appointment.

‘A Taliban shura has unanimously appointed Hakimullah Mehsud as successor to Baitullah Mehsud,’ he told AFP by telephone.

‘The shura meeting continued for two days and was attended by 22 members,’ he said.

Pakistani intelligence officials say TTP spokesman Maulvi Omar, who was arrested this month, has confirmed that Mehsud was killed in a CIA strike on his father-in-law’s house on August 5.

‘Baitullah is alive but he is seriously sick,’ Mohammad said, adding: ‘God forbid if Baitullah is dead, Hakimullah will be his successor.’

Hakimullah is considered as close aide of Mehsud, and a powerful commander who operates from the Orakzai tribal district, where US drones have conducted several missile strikes.

Pakistan in late April launched a punishing military offensive against Taliban in the northwest, targeting the militants in the districts of Swat, Buner and Lower Dir after militants advanced perilously close to the capital.

Last month the military claimed to have cleared the area of the Taliban threat, and vowed to turn their attention to the mountainous tribal belt where Mehsud and his network have thrived since 2007.

Pakistani and US officials accuse Mehsud of masterminding the 2007 assassination of ex-prime minister Benazir Bhutto and a string of other attacks that have killed hundreds of people here over the last two years.

Government officials have said the death of the al-Qaeda-linked warlord plunged the TTP into disarray, with factions opening up as different commanders vied to lead the militia blamed for hundreds of deaths across Pakistan.

My Question: How can the Taliban leaders (22 to 40 of them, depending on news reporting) meet for two days and not get a Predator or three crammed into their meeting place? How can they travel to one location and no one report this to the Pakistan Military, or be picked up by U.S. Intelligence?

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One Response to “22 Taliban Leaders meet: Pick Hakimulla Mehsud new Pakistan Taliban Leader”

  1. Sayed Abdulhayan Says:

    I am Sayed Abdulhayan from Bangalore India.I am working in IBM India as software engineer.

    I want to explore Afganistan and Pakistan and discover it Cultural ettiqueties.

    I am interested in Journalism and reporting.But am not a professional Journalist.

    Can you please help me to get Mobile numbers or Address details of Talibans from Afganistan or Pakistan.

    I want to interview Taliban about their view on India.

    I want to interview hakimuallah Mehsud.Can you please help me to provide his spokemen’s Mobile number so that I can meet him for interview.

    I want to become reporter and Journalist.Please help me in this regard

    Thanks & Regards
    Sayed Abdulhayan

    Application Developer
    IBM India Private Limited.
    EGC-GD-410
    Embassy Golf Links, Ground Floor
    Bangalore 560071.
    http://www.ibm.com

    Email: abulhayan@gmail.com
    Work: +91-80-4192 Ext. 6645
    Mob: +91 9986610680

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