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Taliban tear in Pakistan continues

Taliban activity in Pakistan is increasing and the attacks have been bigger and more coordinated. Although they have suffered many losses in the government efforts to move them out of certain areas, they have hit numerous targets far outside their zone of control. Bill Roggio talks about the many incidents in the past two weeks at Long War Journal.

Taliban assault teams launched simultaneous attacks against three police buildings in the eastern city of Lahore. Twenty-six people were killed in the attacks. The attacks follow last weekend's assault on the Army General Headquarters in Rawalpindi.

The assault teams targeted the Federal Investigation Agency building, the Manawan police training centre, and the Elite Force Headquarters.

"Different group of attackers have attacked and tried to enter two police training centres in Lahore," Kamran Ahmad, a Lahore police official, told AFP. "We now have three near-simultaneous attacks against police facilities,"

A more ominous and dangerous turn is that Punjabi and Kashmiri Taliban elements have begun actively attacking the government. One of these groups claimed responsibility for the assault on an Army base and the kidnapping of 42 soldiers. Previously these groups were focused on India and if they join forces or align themselves with Pashtuns and others in Waziristan and the other border locations, it could represent a serious escalation. It has the potential to turn into a civil war if all of the militants attempt to overthrow the government or carve out an autonomous zone that they run. The previous treaties the government has signed with the border tribes have led to the increased capabilities and violence we see now in both Pakistan and Afghanistan. The existence of such a zone would be the mother of all safe havens and is not something we, the Pakistani government, the Afghan government and the rest of the world want to contemplate.

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