Kashmiri wanted to create Laskhar-e-Osama, target embassies

Islamabad: Al-Qaeda linked terrorist Ilyas Kashmiri was in the process of forming a new terror group called the "Laskhar-e-Osama" for carrying out reprisal attacks to avenge the killing of bin Laden.

The new group was plotting a wave of suicide bombings across Pakistan and to target embassies and diplomats, the Express Tribune newspaper reported today.

Kashmiri, who was reportedly killed in a drone strike on June 3, had convened a special meeting in the Data Khel area of North Waziristan Agency a week ago to constitute the special squad.

The head of the fearsome 313 Brigade of the Harkatul Jihad-al-Islami (HuJI) called a meeting of several Tehreek-e- Taliban Pakistan (TTP) commanders to create "Laskhar-e-Osama" which would be tasked with carrying out suicide bombings throughout Pakistan, including some high-profile targets, the daily said quoting reports generated by Pakistani intelligence agencies.

Besides Kashmiri, TTP commanders Asmatullah Maavia, Amjad Farooqui and Badar Mansoor among others attended the meeting.

The three commanders were assigned territories to conduct bombings. While Mansoor was tasked with targeting Lahore and southern Punjab, Farooq was told to carry out attacks in Islamabad and Azad Kashmir.

Intelligence agencies were able to collect information about the secret meeting and they were also told that Kashmiri had moved his location away from Data Khel, the daily said quoting sources.

Information about possible attacks has been forwarded to law-enforcement agencies throughout the country. Security officials have been told to beef up protective arrangements at the possible target sites.

Among the attacks planned by the group were strikes against diplomats and embassies in Pakistan, including those from the United States, China, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.

The militants reportedly planned to target the US embassy in Islamabad with high explosives, the daily said.

Other plans included procuring large quantities of poison, presumably to be mixed with food supplies for NATO troops that pass through Pakistani territory.

The plan called for abducting the drivers of NATO supply trucks and then mixing the poison with food supplies.

Among the Pakistani targets on the militants` list were high-profile security officials and the Pakistan Ordnance Factories in Wah, the country`s leading production facility for ammunition.

Visiting Chinese dignitaries were also reported to be targets. Possible means of delivering explosives included motorcycle rickshaws, the daily said.