close
Advertisement
Can't connect right now! retry

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!
December 19, 2014

School attack isolates Fazlullah within Taliban

 
December 19, 2014

ISLAMABAD: The brutal carnage at the Army Public School in Peshawar, which killed 130-plus innocent children, seems to have isolated Mullah Fazlullah not only within the Pakistani Taliban but also among the ranks of the Afghan Taliban who have also condemned the incident.
In a clear indication of the growing isolation Mullah Fazlullah faces within the Pakistani Taliban after the deadly assault, the TTP’s Jamaatul Ahraar, which is considered to be the most influential and equally ferocious splinter group of the Taliban, has distanced itself from the Peshawar massacre, saying that the act of killing children was condemnable. The Jamaatul Ahraar spokesman, Ehsanullah Ehsan, said in a statement that the killing of innocent non-combatants, women, children, old or sick was forbidden in Islam. “The Jamaatul Ahraar has nothing to do with the killing of schoolchildren in Peshawar and we believe that the teachings of Islamic Shariah should have been kept in mind while dealing with them”. Ehsanullah Ehsan said that the Jamaatul Ahraar fully endorses the statement issued by the Afghan Taliban wherein they had condemned the slaughter of innocent schoolchildren.
The Peshawar tragedy has been condemned by the spokesman for the Afghan Taliban, Zabihullah Mujahid, in a statement released on the group’s official Urdu website: “The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan has always condemned killing of children and innocent people at every juncture. The deliberate killing of innocent people, women and children goes against the principles of Islam and every Islamic government and movement must adhere to this fundamental essence. The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the official name of the Taliban) expresses its condolences over the incident and mourns with the families of killed children.”
But contrary to their statement, the fact remains that the Afghan Taliban frequently kill innocent people. The United Nations reported in July this year that there were approximately

4,853 civilian casualties in Afghanistan in the first six months of 2014. The UN attributed 74 percent of these casualties to anti-government elements, including the Taliban, adding that the onus was on the Taliban and other anti-government forces to reduce civilian casualties. This is despite the fact that the fugitive Ameer of Afghan Taliban Mullah Mohammad Omar has repeatedly asked his fighters not to kill innocent people and children. In a message celebrating the end of Ramazan this year, Mullah Omar had stressed, “Every caution should be taken to protect life and property of the public during operations, so that, God forbid, someone is harmed.” H added that the Taliban’s “Department of Prevention of Civilian Casualties should pay attention to its task to prevent civilian casualties.”
The condemnation of the Peshawar school attack by the Pakistan and Afghan Taliban seems to have been prompted by the collective denunciation of the senseless massacre of innocent children. The condemnation of the school massacre by the Afghan Taliban is significant because the attack has been claimed by Mullah Fazlullah group which is loyal to Mullah Mohammad Omar who had played a key role in the elevation of a non-Mehsud and non-Waziristani Fazlullah as the new TTP Ameer following the November 1, 2013 death of Hakeemullah Mehsud in a US drone attack. But it remains to be seen if the Afghan Taliban’s condemnation of the school attack by Fazlullah has any additional implications, or is just public speaking.
However, while some of the Pakistan Taliban are trying to portray themselves as “good Taliban” by condemning the Peshawar school butchery, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has vowed the other day not to show any distinction between ‘good’ or ‘bad’ Taliban. “This heinous incident is an example of the barbarism whose example cannot be found in the history. We announce that there will be no differentiation between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ Taliban,” he added.