Pakistan Taliban book claims group was behind Benazir Bhutto’s assassination

‘Inqilab Mehsood South Waziristan: From British Raj to American Imperialism,’ by Abu Mansoor Asim Mufti Noor Wali, a senior Taliban leader.
Updated 15 January 2018

Pakistan Taliban book claims group was behind Benazir Bhutto’s assassination

ISLAMABAD: A recent book by a senior Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) leader claims that his group was behind the 2007 assassination of Pakistan’s first woman Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.
The new book, ‘Inqilab Mehsood South Waziristan: From British Raj to American Imperialism,’ was released on Nov 30, 2017, and written by Abu Mansoor Asim Mufti Noor Wali, a senior leader in the Taliban terror group.
Arab News has obtained a copy of the 588-page online book.
Benazir Bhutto was assassinated in the garrison city of Rawalpindi shortly after she addressed an election rally on December 27, 2007.
According to the the book author, two suicide bombers, Bilal alias Saeed and Ikramullah, were assigned to carry out the attack on Benazir Bhutto on December 27.
“Bomber Bilal first fired at Benazir Bhutto from his pistol and the bullet hit her neck. Then he detonated his explosive vest and blew up people in the procession,” the book says.
The book adds that the terrorist Taliban group was also involved in the suicide attack on Benazir Bhutto’s procession in Karachi October 2007, which had killed nearly 140 people, but Benazir had survived.
“Despite attacks on Benazir Bhutto’s procession in Karachi, the government had not taken appropriate security measures that made it possible for the attackers to have easy access to Benazir Bhutto,” the book says.
A former Taliban leader confirmed to Arab News that the book has written by the group.
Then President Pervez Musharraf had blamed TTP for the attack on Benazir Bhutto, and the Ministry of Interior, after the incident, released an audio conversation and said it was between the two men who were assigned to kill Benazir Bhutto.
In August 2017 an anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Rawalpindi formally charged Musharraf in the case of Benazir Bhutto assassination and declared him “most wanted” in the case.
But Musharraf denied any involvement and dismissed the charges as politically-motivated.
The five TTP suspects in Benazir’s murder case — Rafaqat Hussain, Husnain Gul, Sher Zaman, Aitzaz Shah and Abdul Rashid — were cleared of all charges in the murder trial in August last year.
The book covers the TTP’s history, its attacks, military operations in the tribal regions, TTP’s activities in Afghanistan, tribal system, Mehsood tribe role in the TTP, TTP operations in Karachi and its campaign against polio vaccination.
Pakistan Peoples Party co-chairman Bilawal Bhutto, and the son of Benazir Bhutto, blamed Musharraf for his mother’s assassination on her 10th death anniversary on Dec. 27, last year.
Pakistan Peoples Party’s spokesperson Farhatullah Babar said the Taliban claim has strengthened the party’s suspicion that the militants had been “used to execute the terrorist act.”
“In fact we have been demanding to know who were the masterminds behind the plan to martyr Benazir Bhutto,” Babar told Arab News.
“Whoever the mastermind might have been they should be exposed. They had in fact used these people (Taliban) to execute the plan,” the PPP leader added.


Iran dismisses ‘desperate’ US move to end nuclear waivers

Updated 28 May 2020

Iran dismisses ‘desperate’ US move to end nuclear waivers

  • ‘Ending waivers for nuclear cooperation with Iran ... has effectively no impact on Iran’s continued work’

TEHRAN: Tehran on Thursday dismissed the impact of what it called Washington’s “desperate attempt” to end sanction waivers for nations that remain in the Iran nuclear accord.
The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran said the United States had made the move in a bid “to distract public opinion from its continued defeats at the hands of Iran.”
“Ending waivers for nuclear cooperation with Iran... has effectively no impact on Iran’s continued work” on what the Islamic republic insists is a purely civilian nuclear energy program, its spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi added in a statement published on the agency’s website.
The US decision, he said, was in response to Iranian fuel shipments to Venezuela — which is also under US sanctions — and the “significant advancements of Iran’s nuclear industry.”
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday that the United States was responding to Iran’s “brinksmanship” — its scrapping of certain nuclear commitments aimed at pressuring Washington to remove sanctions as called for by the 2015 accord.
“These escalatory actions are unacceptable and I cannot justify renewing the waiver,” Pompeo said in a statement.
President Donald Trump withdrew the US from the landmark agreement — also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA — and reimposed sanctions on Iran in 2018.
The remaining parties to the deal include Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia.
In May 2019, Iran announced it was suspending nuclear commitments to the deal, starting with removing limits on its heavy water and enriched uranium stockpiles.
It was in retaliation for US sanctions and what Iran deemed Europe’s inaction to provide it with the JCPOA’s economic benefits.
Washington had until now issued waivers to allow companies, primarily from Russia, to keep carrying out the nuclear work of the agreement without risking legal ramifications in the US economy.
It will end waivers that allowed the modification of the heavy water reactor in Arak, which prevented it from using plutonium for military use, as well as the export of spent and scrap research reactor fuel.
Kamalvandi said ending the waivers would not impact Iran’s continued work on the Arak reactor and “other equipment” by Iranian experts.