IS emerging in Karachi?

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  • Sources say IS working in Karachi since July 2014
  • Say TTP militants made IS group in Karachi, asked militants of Sipah Sahaba Pakistan and Jaish-e-Muhammad to join them 

 

An investigation into the attack on a bus carrying Ismailis at Karachi’s Safoora Goth area has revealed that Islamic State (IS) has been working in the metropolis since July 2014.

Sources told Pakistan Today that self-styled IS started working in the metropolis in July 2014 when four militants associated with banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) escaped from North Waziristan Agency (NWA) after the advent of military offensive and reached Karachi.

“We received reports that some militants arrived in Karachi and made a new group that was IS. We got to know that they were hiding in Sohrab Goth area of Ganna Mandi. Later on, we were informed that they approached militants of Sipah Sahaba Pakistan (SSP) and Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) in the city and asked them to join IS,” sources claimed.

“We were also told that IS militants have prepared a mobile similar to that of Karachi Police and often patrolled Sohrab Goth area,” sources said.

Earlier, in a letter to Pakistan Rangers Sindh director general (DG) and the Sindh inspector general (IG) in October 2014, the Crime Monitoring Cell (CMC) informed that an Uzbekistan-based IS leader contacted annoyed militants of banned outfits in the country and offered them to join IS.

The letter available with Pakistan Today reads, “It has been reported that Abid Kahot of Kahota met with Waleed Al-Ama of Uzbekistan, who is working for Daish (ISIS). Abid Kahot was offered to become Ameer of IS in Pakistan. He was tasked to contact annoyed activists of TTP, SSP and JeM to join IS. It is also reported that few months back, Abid Kahot and Waleed Al-Ama held a meeting with two individuals who are ATBs (Afghan Training Boys) and asked them to find a suitable place around Raiwind Markaz to establish the office of IS Pakistan chapter.”

“I received a phone-call from the IS militants year when I was serving as Sohrab Goth SHO,” said a Karachi police inspector, who has killed many militants in encounters.

“Introducing themselves as activists of the militant group, they warned me of attacks,” the inspector said, adding, “In those days, I received threatening calls from different militant groups because I along with my team killed many militants of various groups in encounters in Sohrab Goth.”

Raja Umar Khattab, an official of Counter-Terrorism Department, previously known as Crime Investigation Department (CID), in a statement said that “IS’ shadow was slowly emerging”.

Khattab, who has been extensively dealing with terrorism-related cases in Karachi for several years, believed that the shadow of IS could also be seen in other terrorist activities in the city, including attacks on an American academic, members of Bohri community and police officers.