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Homeland Security

Pakistan Arrests IS Leader, Breaks Islamist Recruitment Ring

Sputnik News

14:16 22.01.2015(updated 15:06 22.01.2015)

Security services in Pakistan break up an IS recruitment ring, arresting a commander and his accomplices who were paid $600 for every man they recruited to fight in Syria.

MOSCOW, January 22 (Sputnik) – Pakistani security services arrested an Islamic State (IS) commander and his two accomplices, Pakistani daily, the Express Tribune has reported.

'Yousaf Al-Salafi and his two accomplices were arrested by intelligence agencies and Punjab police,' an official told the newspaper, adding that IS literature was also discovered in the raid.

According to AFP, Al-Salafi is believed by officials to have been setting up IS operations in Pakistan, facilitating the recruitment of local men to fight in Syria.

Al-Salafi, a Pakistani from Syria, was briefly detained in Turkey after crossing the border, but managed to escape and reached Pakistan, a source told Reuters

Reuters reports that one of Al-Salafi's accomplices, Hafiz Tayyab, recruited Pakistanis to fight for IS, receiving $600 from the group for every person he recruited.

According to Pakistan's Express Triune daily, the rise of IS in the region is a concern for officials, as the country is already plagued by a Taliban insurgency in its western provinces. Graffiti supporting the group has been discovered in cities around the country, according to the newspaper.

Last October, a spokesman for the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) group had told press that six Pakistani Taliban groups had defected from the TTP to pledge their allegiance to the Islamic State's Abu Bakar al-Baghdadi.

In late December, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told Russian business newspaper Kommersant that Russian intelligence has read 'reports that [IS] emissaries have been sighted in northern Afghanistan,' saying that this poses a risk to Central Asia, and hence to Russia.

According to the US Department of State, TTP claimed responsibility for the December 16, 2014 attack on a school in Peshawar that killed 148 individuals, including 132 children.

Earlier this month, Iranian border guards arrested three Afghan nationals attempting to travel to Iraq to join the Islamic State, Iran's FARS News Agency reported.


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