- CTD arrests two TTP militants involved in extorting politicians.
- CTD official says TTP extorting businessmen, politicians, others.
- Arrested TTP militants are Afghan nationals, says CTD official.
Pakistan plans to take up the issue of Afghan nationals’ involvement in extorting Pakistani citizens once again, a top official said Tuesday, as Islamabad ramps up efforts to safeguard its people from cross-border threats.
The authorities have time and again mentioned that Afghan citizens were involved in terrorism, extortion, and other illicit activities in Pakistan, asking the neighbouring nation to take action against such elements.
In a press conference in Peshawar, DIG Counter Terrorism Finance Imran Shahid said the Pakistani side has decided to raise the matter of Afghan citizens’ involvement in extortion with the interim Taliban government in Kabul.
The top official mentioned that the authorities have arrested two extortionists, who belong to the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) — the banned group that Pakistan says has safe havens in Afghanistan.
“Zaman Faiz and Saeedullah, who were arrested, are Afghan citizens. They were arrested from Lahore and we have also seized their mobile phones,” he said.
The extortionists demanded money from businessmen, politicians, and other people — as people opted against complaining to the local authorities out of fear.
“The arrested people operated in district Mohmand; they have 71 other accomplices. This network has also called politicians (including a senator and a member of provincial assembly) seeking extortion money.”
The CTD official mentioned that the arrested TTP members have also made 10 WhatsApp groups related to extortion.
The banned TTP was crushed through military operations in 2014, after a brazen attack on the Army Public School in Peshawar, which killed nearly 150 people, mostly pupils.
The TTP were largely routed, their fighters fleeing to Afghanistan where they were hunted by US-led forces.
But after Afghanistan was back under Taliban rule, Pakistan says that it has become a “safe haven” for the TTP terrorists, who are also involved in attacks on military personnel.
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