As Bangladesh is heading towards forthcoming general election, which is scheduled to take place on January 7, 2024, at the directives of Tarique Rahman, acting chairman of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), who is a convicted terrorist on run the party, which is termed as Tier-III terrorist organization by US courts have established contact with Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) with the target of buying dozens of remote-controlled high-power explosives with the notorious target of disrupting the election through series of terrorist acts.
The Pakistani Taliban formally called the Tehreek-e-Taliban-e-Pakistan (TTP), is an umbrella organization of various Islamist armed militant groups operating along the Afghan–Pakistani border. Formed in 2007 by Baitullah Mehsud, its current leader is Noor Wali Mehsud, who has publicly pledged allegiance to the Afghan Taliban (Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan). After the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan in August 2021, Pakistan was unable to persuade the Afghan Taliban to crack down on the TTP. The Afghan Taliban instead mediated talks between Pakistan and the TTP, leading to the release of dozens of TTP prisoners in Pakistan and a temporary ceasefire between the Pakistani government and the TTP. After the ceasefire expired on 10 December 2021, the TTP increased attacks on Pakistani security forces from sanctuaries inside Afghanistan.
According to international media reports, many of the TTP’s leaders are veterans of the fighting in Afghanistan and have supported the fight against the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force by providing soldiers, training, and logistics.
On September 1, 2010, the United States designated the TTP as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) and identified Hakimullah Mehsud and Wali ur-Rehman as specially designated global terrorists. The designation of the TTP as an FTO makes it a crime to provide support or to do business with the group and also allows the US to freeze its assets. The US State Department also issued a US$5 million reward for information on the two individuals’ locations.
In January 2011, the British government moved to classify the TTP as a banned terrorist organization under its Terrorism Act 2000.
In July 2011, the Canadian government also added the TTP to its list of banned terrorist organizations.
According to a credible source based in Manila, at the directives of Tarique Rahman, on November 8, 2023, a senior leader of Bangladesh Nationalist Party contacted a TTP kingpin over Telegram apps and requested remote-controlled explosives for “unseating the un-Islamic government” in Bangladesh.
It is further learnt that the consignment of remote-controlled explosives may reach Bangladesh via Bangladesh-Myanmar border with active collaboration of Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA).
The source further said, instead of sending remote-controlled explosives, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan may send one of its bomb experts to Bangladesh and as per arrangement, this bomb-maker would enter Bangladesh under the guise of tourist via Nepal. It may be mentioned here that while Al Qaeda succeeded in establishing hidden bases within mountainous areas in Nepal, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan also succeeded in establishing is minor footprint in the country. Such groups of TTP comprise 5-7 members. These Nepal-based TTP groups are mainly looking after financial matters, while it also is alleged that TTP is generating fund through participating in transnational drug trafficking rackets by forming affiliations with Afghan drug-lords as well as narco-cartels in South America.
Counterterrorism experts said, the UN Sanctions Committee on Al Qaeda and ISIL’s recent report has pointed to the possibility of a merger between Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and Al Qaeda in the Indian Sub-continent (AQIS). Subsequent reporting in some sections of Pakistan’s mainstream media has interpreted this as an attempt by TTP to merge into Al Qaeda. According to the report, the purpose of the merger is to create an umbrella organization where various South Asian militant groups can shelter, or even cooperate, to avoid the Taliban’s efforts to control them and maintain plausible deniability in the event of attacks.
According to source, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan also is involved in Amphetamine trade by establishing connections with Myanmar-based drug-manufacturing rackets.
It may be mentioned here that while since 2006, Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP)’s leader Tarique Rahman has been actively involved in drug trafficking by joining FBI wanted terror don Dawood Ibrahim’s infamous D-Company, where he has been mainly sending consignments of heroin and cocaine into Western countries, including the United Kingdom, since Tarique Rahman left Bangladesh in 2007 and subsequently landed in London and sought political asylum, he has been gradually expanding his “narco-jihad” and has added amphetamine in the list of drugs which began flooding the UK and other European nations since 2010.
It may be mentioned here that, drug traffickers consider sending drugs to Western nations and consider narco-jihad as using “haram money for halal cause”. While a Pakistani journalist named, Ahmed Rashid published an interview with an Afghan official where the latter asserted: “It is a part of our noble responsibility to spoil the Western society with drugs. Opium is permissible because it is consumed by Kaffirs (unbelievers) in the West and not by Muslims or Afghans”, ultra-Islamist BNP’s leader Tarique Rahman must also be thinking in the same line while he continues narco-trade with the nefarious goal of making tons of cash and simultaneously damaging the Western societies.
According to source, on getting remote-controlled explosives, Bangladesh Nationalist Party shall start targeting election campaign rallies, residences of the candidates, offices of Awami League and its alliance partners, including Jatiya Party as well as the Election Commission, which may begin immediately after the Victory Day of Bangladesh.