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XI Corps

The XI Corps, headquartered at Peshawar in the North West Frontier Province bordering Afghanistan since it was raised in 1975, is sometimes referred to Army Reserve Center. It consists of two divisions, including one that replaced the division sent to FCNA. It reportedly also includes one independent brigade, though sources disagree as to whether this is an armor or artillery unit [most sources agree that it is an Independent Armored Brigade].

The XI Corps command was the primary support and logistic base for the Taliban. During the five-year-long Taliban regime in Afghanistan, Pakistan had gained several advantages with a friendly neighbour at Kabul. It shifted large elements of its XI and XII Corps close to the Indian border in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), Punjab and Rajasthan. The 9 Infantry Division of XI Corps had been deployed opposite Dras with Headquarters at Gulteri, under X Corps.

By early July 1999, during the Kargil conflict, Pakistan had moved most of its strike corps to the eastern border, forcing India to heighten the vigil across the LoC and the international border. Pakistan's XI corps and XII corps, which had been stationed in Peshawar and Quetta, were believed to have moved east, reinforcing the V corps in Karachi, whose role had been to intercept any Indian attempt to cut the Karachi-Lahore road. The Pakistani concept of Riposte was neutralized, as the reserve formations were denuded of their forces, in that both XI Corps in Peshawar and XII Corps in Quetta were denuded of their divisions, with one in Afghanistan and the other in Jammu and Kashmir. The X corps at Rawalpindi was in position across the Line of Control in Kashmir, and the four mountain divisions near the LoC had been reinforced with the three brigades that have moved into Skardu.

As of early 2001 it was reported that the 7 Infantry division from Mardan was moving under the command of Northern Areas Command [Force Command Northern Areas - FCNA], possibly to a location opposite Kargil in Kashmir. To make XI Corps viable after the move of 7 Infantry Division Pakistan would have to raise one more division.

In November 2001 it was reported that Pakistan had begun shifting elements of its forces from the Indian borders to its borders with Afghanistan. This was the first time in six years that troops had reverted to their original location under the XI Corps (Peshawar) and XII Corps (Quetta). As of late 2001 the 11 Corps was entrusted with the task of detecting the Al-Qaida activists who had fled Afghanistan in the wake of American airstrikes on Afghanistan.

In December 2001 the Indian government ordered perhaps the largest post-Second World War military build-up, sending some three-quarters of India's 1.2 million soldiers on to offensive positions on the border with Pakstian. Pakistan responded by moving 10, 11 and 12 Corps from their Afghan frontier locations near Rawalpindi, Peshawar and Quetta to its eastern frontier with India.

In mid-October 2001 Pakistani President General Pervaiz Musharraf re-shuffled several key security positions. The new Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) chief was Lieutenant General Ehsanul Haq, former commander of the Peshawar-based 11 Corps. Although Gen Haq took charge of the Peshawar Corps only in May, he was familiar with Taliban bases, assets and secrets.

XI CorpsPeshawar 3400'N7133'E
U/I Armored BDEU/I Location ____'N____'E
7th Infantry DivisionMardan 3412'N7202'E
9th Infantry DivisionRawalkot [Mardan ? ] 3447'N7330'E

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Page last modified: 09-07-2011 13:04:11 ZULU