Pak fears Taliban attacks in Islamabad, Rawalpindi

Islamabad: Pakistan`s Interior Ministry has warned authorities that a group of Taliban militants plans to carry out attacks on targets in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, including the prison where Lashkar-e-Taiba members charged with involvement in the Mumbai attacks are being held.

A secret report circulated by the National Crisis Management Cell (NCMC) of the Interior Ministry contains "specific warnings of terror attacks" by around 16 members of the banned Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan over the next two weeks, The Express Tribune quoted its sources as saying.

The report, sent to all provincial home departments, provincial and federal police departments and the Islamabad`s Commissioner, said Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi is likely to be the "main target" of the militants who intend to "free their accomplices in a prison break".

LeT operational commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, one of the masterminds of the 2008 Mumbai attack, and six others charged with involvement in the 26/11 terror strike are currently being held at Adiala Jail.

Western and Indian intelligence sources had earlier confirmed to PTI that Lakhvi had access to mobile phones within the prison and was in touch with other LeT operatives to direct the banned group`s operations.

The Taliban militants, who are "highly trained and reported to be currently residing in Attock" in Punjab province, are expected to simultaneously target government installations and attempt kidnapping some high-profile people in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, The Express Tribune reported.

Another intelligence report, circulated among law enforcement agencies by the NCMC, said another group of terrorists was planning to target Pearl Continental Hotel, Chaklala Airbase and the adjoining Benazir Bhutto International Airport in Rawalpindi.

Information received through various intelligence sources suggested that Anisur Rehman alias Pir Farooq, a commander of the Pakistani Taliban, has planned a series of targeted attacks on Pakistan Army posts along the border with Afghanistan.

Yet another secret report had revealed that two Afghanistan-based Taliban commanders from Swat Valley ? Shakar and Kufar Kush ? had left Kunar province with 50 militants to mount terror attacks in Dir district of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province.

The militants reportedly left Kunar on August 13 and are headed towards Binashahi in Dir.

The NCMC has also circulated another report that said Chinese diplomats and engineers, who are working at several development projects in Pakistan, are a prime target of Pakistani Taliban commander Aziz Mehsud.

Security agencies have been asked to ensure that adequate safety and security is provided to Chinese officials.