Pakistan gets serious – arrests a former naval commando and his brother

Reuters is reporting that the Pakistani security officials have arrested two brothers – Kamran Ahmed and Zaman Ahmed – in relation to the attack on the naval base last week. The report has some interesting detail about the brothers and the ex-navy commando, including the fact that he was bounced from the navy because he attacked a senior officer and was declared mentally unfit for duty. Perhaps what they really meant was that Ahmed was showing signs of being an Islamist which is incompatible with being in the armed forces.

As usual, one has to read the details to find the extra little nuggets of information. In this case, the report indicates that Ahmed had supplied information about the naval base to a militant network. Also, Ahmed was suspected of involvement with an earlier attack upon an army base but was never arrested over that particular crime:

The Pakistani Taliban, which is allied to al Qaeda, claimed responsibility for the attack on the Mehran base, but many analysts believe they had inside help.

A group of between four and six militants besieged the base for 16 hours and destroyed two P-3C Orion aircraft from the Unites States, crucial for Pakistan’s maritime surveillance capabilities.

Pakistan has faced a wave of assaults over the last few years, many of them claimed by the Pakistani Taliban and other al Qaeda-linked militant groups.

In October 2009, a small group of militants attacked the Army’s General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, taking 42 people hostage, including several officers. By the end of the day-long siege, nine gunmen, 11 soldiers and three hostages were dead.


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