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Ashrafuddin Pirzada
Monday, April 30, 2012
From Print Edition
 
 

 

LANDIKOTAL: Al-Qaeda has named Farman Ali Shinwari, hailing from Landikotal subdivision of Khyber Agency, as its head in Pakistan, sources told The News here Sunday.

 

Reliable sources based in Waziristan told The News that a statement had been issued by the al-Qaeda leadership, saying that Farman Ali Shinwari has been chosen as the head in Pakistan. Local officials also confirmed the development.

 

The statement issued by al-Qaeda’s Dawa Wing said that after consultations and approval of top Al-Qaeda leadership, Farman Shinwari was selected as head of the network in Pakistan. The statement said that reason of his selection was his close affiliation with Badar Mansoor and his knowledge about Fata.

 

Farman Shinwari, 30, was close to Badar Mansoor, the former al-Qaeda figure killed in a US drone attack in North Waziristan on February 9, 2011. Farman married about three years ago and has two children.

 

The statement also mentioned the names of all al-Qaeda leaders, right from Badar Mansoor to top commanders including Osama bin Laden. It was stated that their men have sacrificed their lives for the sake of Islam.

 

The sources said the al-Qaeda commanders based in Pakistani was not involved in the decision, but they only ratified it.Farman Shinwari belongs to Khugakhel sub-tribe of Shinwaris based in Landikotal, and has five brothers. He got B.Sc degree in Chemistry and Biology from Landikotal Degree College a few years ago and did his master’s in International Relations from the University of Peshawar in the first division.

 

All of Farman Shinwari’s brothers are affiliated with the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and other militant groups. His elder brother Hazrat Nabi Shinwari, alias Tamanchy Mulla, was a theology teacher in a government-run school in Landikotal. He was leading the TTP in Khyber Agency in 2005 and also used to send militants to Kashmir and Afghanistan. He has remained the head of Harkatul Mujahideen and is nowadays said to be leading his group of TTP men in Waziristan.