Chronology: Pakistan

The Middle East Journal, Summer 2014 | Go to article overview

Chronology: Pakistan


See also Afghanistan

Jan. 20: Pakistani air strikes killed at least 40 in North Waziristan. The government appeared to be retaliating for recent bombings in Rawalpindi and Bannu, which killed 30 members of security forces. Militants also killed 18 Shi'i pilgrims in Baluchistan Province on January 21 who were returning from Iran. [NYT, 1/22]

Jan. 21: Gunmen shot and killed three health workers involved in an anti-polio campaign in two separate incidents in Karachi. The attacks halted the vaccination campaign. [RFE/RL, 1/21]

Jan. 31: A special court rejected a request by former president Pervez Musharraf for medical treatment, instead issuing arrest warrants in the treason case against him. Musharraf was charged with subverting the constitution in 2007 by imposing emergency rule and firing much of the judiciary. Musharraf's lawyers said he needed an immediate heart scan and wanted it performed abroad, but opponents feared that he would not return. Security and health concerns had delayed court proceedings four times previously. [NYT, 1/31]

Feb. 4: A suicide bomber killed nine people and wounded 50 near a hotel frequented by members of the Shi'i Muslim minority in the city of Peshawar. A new militant group, Hizb-ul-Mujahidin, claimed responsibility for the attack. [RFE/RL, 2/4]

Feb. 6: Government officials and Taliban representatives held formal peace negotiations in which each side handed the other a wish list. Both sides said the talks were positive. Skepticism surrounded the talks because few believed the Taliban, who declared the country's constitution and democratic system to be un-Islamic, would change their hard-line stance. [AP, 2/6]

Feb. 11: A grenade attack on a movie theater killed 11 people and injured 25 in the city of Peshawar. More than 100 people were watching a Pashto-language film when militants threw grenades. The theater had received threats for allegedly spreading obscenity and vulgarity, and had attempted to increase its security prior to the attack. [NYT, 2/11]

Feb. 12: Twenty-five unknown gunmen attacked the home of Israrullah Khan, the leader of an anti-Taliban militia, in the city of Peshawar, killing him and eight of his relatives. [RFE/RL, 2/12]

Feb. 13: A Taliban-placed bomb killed 12 officers of Pakistan's elite police commando force and wounded 55 people, mostly from the Rapid Response Force, in Karachi. The government was trying to broker a peace deal with local Taliban militants. [AP, 2/13]

Feb. 16: A faction of the Pakistani Taliban in the Mohmand Agency executed 23 paramilitary soldiers kidnapped in 2010. The group claimed to be retaliating against the government's continued security operations against the Taliban and extrajudicial killings. The government canceled peace talks with the Taliban scheduled for February 17. [WP, RFE/RL, 2/16]

Feb. 18: Police detained six men in Baluchistan on suspicion of murder for stoning a man and woman to death for committing adultery. Those arrested included the woman's father and brother and the man's father and uncle, as well as a cleric who may have issued an order to kill the two. Stoning was rare in Pakistan, though honor killings were common. [RFE/ RL, 2/18]

Feb. 20: Air force jets bombed militant hideouts in northern Waziristan, killing 38, according to the government. The air strikes came after government efforts to negotiate a peace deal with the Taliban in the region stalled. [BBC, 2/20]

Feb. 22: Helicopters attacked a military training facility in the Hangu District on the edge of the Orakzai tribal region, killing nine. It was the third attack following a breakdown in negotiations for a peace deal between the government and the Taliban. [RFE/RL, 2/22]

Feb. 24: Unknown attackers killed senior Taliban commander Asmatullah Shahin Bhittani in North Waziristan and three of his aides. Bhittani played a key role in attempts at negotiating peace with the government. The army listed him as one of 20 most-wanted Taliban commanders. …

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