Name of Organization

Tariq Geedar Group

Formation

The Tariq Geedar Group is a faction of the outlawed Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Exact information about the date of its formation is not known.

Leadership

Leader: Umar Mansoor

 

Figure  SEQ Figure \* ARABIC 1: Umar Mansoor

The Tariq Geedar Group is being led by a Taliban militant commander named Umar Mansoor, who is also the alleged master-mind of the brutal Peshawar Army Public School (APS) massacre in December 2014. His various aliases include ‘Umar Khalifa’, ‘Umar Naray’ and ‘Umar Adinzai’. He is the ‘amir’, or the leader of the Peshawar and Darra Adam Khel chapters of the TTP[1].

 

Mansoor was initially educated in Islamabad, where he later joined a madrassa (religious seminary). Details about these institutions where he gained his early education are unknown. One of three brothers, Mansoor spent time in Karachi before joining the Taliban in the year 2007[2]. In Karachi, he briefly worked as a labourer[3].

 

School of thought/ Classification

Islamist/ Sharia Law

Ideology

The Tariq Geedar Group has been involved in violent acts that seek to implement Sharia Law in Pakistan and oppose the Pakistani military’s ongoing operation ‘Zarb-e-Azb’ in North Waziristan that was launched on June 15th 2014. Since the group is a faction of the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), its ideology is in-line with the TTP’s.

Framework

Not available.

Financial resources

 

The group has allegedly been involved in kidnappings and ransom cases[4].

Recruitment tools & demographics

Not available.

Connections & linkages

The Tariq Geedar group is a faction of the Tehreek-e-Talibaan Pakistan (TTP). This link has been ascertained by leading commanders of the Pakistani Taliban themselves[5].

Areas of Operation

Tariq Geedar Group’s area of operation is from Peshawar and the nearby Darra Adam Khel. However, according to a statement by the Director General of the Inter-Services Public Relations (DG-ISPR), the group’s leader Umar Mansoor is currently operating from Afghanistan[6].
 

Tools 

Not available.

Name Variations

Tariq Geedar Afridi Group

Status

The Tariq Geedar Group was proscribed on the 15th of March 2013 by the Government of Pakistan’s Ministry of Interior. Corresponding notification number

F.1/3/2013-Poll-I(1)[7]

 

 

Who they are

The Tariq Geedar Group is a faction of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) that is being led by Umar ‘Naray’ Mansoor. Mansoor is a senior lieutenant who served under the Pakistani Taliban leader Mullah Fazlullah. The group is based in Darra Adam Khel and Peshawar, and has been involved in a number of deadly and violent attacks against the Pakistani state, civilians and minorities[8]. Prior to Mansoor’s leadership, the Darra Adamkhel faction of the TTP was being led by Tariq ‘Geedar’ Afridi and his associate Muhammad Arif ‘Kaka’. Tariq Afridi was killed in the August 2012[9].

The group’s bloodiest assault is the Army Public School (APS) carnage in Peshawar that killed 148 people, including 132 children. The group’s leader is alleged to have given the gunmen instructions from a call that was traced to Afghanistan’s Naziyan District in Nangarhar province. As a result of Pakistan army’s retaliatory counter-terrorism measures, it was reported in 20th December 2014 that the group’s leader Umar Mansoor had been killed in an airstrike in the Khyber tribal regions along with 20 other militants[10].

On 13th February 2015, a Shia mosque was attacked by a group of suicide bombers during Friday prayers in Hayatabad in Peshawar. The attack killed 20 people and injured another 30. Sources within the security establishment stated that ‘there is sufficient evidence to believe that the Hayatabad Mosque butchery was masterminded by Commander Umar Mansoor, who not only heads TTP’s Darra Adam Khel chapter but also Tariq Geedar group, and continues to operate from across the border in Afghanistan[11]’. According to a statement by the DG-ISPR, Mansoor might be operating from Afghanistan[12].

History

The exact origins of the faction remain obscure. It was initially led by one Tariq ‘Geedar’, and was based in Darra Adam Khel. It subsequently came to be known as the ‘Tariq Geedar Group’.

The group’s name first attracted media attention during the attack on a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) airplane (flight PK-756) at the Peshawar airport in June 2014. The group attacked the plane while it was landing at the Bacha Khan International Airport. The attack was launched from the top of the roof of a school nearby. Resultantly, one female passenger was killed and three crew members were injured[13]. Earlier, on 17th March 2014, the group had also targeted the Peshawar District Courts. According to the Wall Street Journal, the group was also responsible for the kidnapping and beheading of The Polish engineer Piotr Stanczak in the year 2009[14].

Organization’s Message

Statements from the group have warned that the attacks are a part of a ‘series that will draw blood for blood’. The group’s brutal assaults are portrayed as retaliation against the Pakistani Army’s ongoing operation ‘Zarb-e-Azab’ in Waziristan. The group is strictly pro-Jihad.

After the Army Public School (APS) attack in Peshawar, the group posted a video on one of the websites used by the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). In it, Umar Mansoor had the following message to convey to Pakistan’s military forces and the security establishment: ‘If our women and children die as martyrs, your children will not escape. We will fight against you in such a style that you attack us and we will take revenge on innocents[15]’. This video is currently not available online.

Target Audience

Not available.

Tools

Not available.

Splinter Groups

No information is available about any further splinter groups.

Annexure

Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan

It is a South Waziristan (Pakistan) based conglomerate of various militant outfits. It demands Pakistan state’s disassociation from the coalition for war on terror.[16]

The Army Public School (APS) Massacre

A terrorist attack that took place on 16th December 2014 in Peshawar in which seven gunmen affiliated with the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) entered a school and opened fire, killing 148 people including 132 children.

Operation Zarb-e-Azb

A military offensive that is being conducted by the Pakistan Armed Forces against a number of militant groups operating within Pakistan and its North Western border areas. The operation was launched on 15th June 2014. 

 


 

[1] Reuters, ‘Taliban video identifies Umar Mansoor as mastermind of Peshawar school attack’. December 19th, 2014. Retrieved from: http://www.deccanchronicle.com/141219/world-neighbours/article/taliban-video-identifies-umar-mansoor-mastermind-peshawar-attack

[2] Williams, David; Wyke, Tom and Iqbal, Aamir, ’Your children will not escape…’. Mail Online. 19th December, 2014.

[3] Ibid.1

[4] Haroon, Asad. ‘Cracks in Tehrik Taliban Pakistan are resulting deadlock for peace talks’. Dispatch News Desk. Retrieved from: http://www.dnd.com.pk/cracks-in-tehrik-taliban-pakistan-are-resulting-deadlock-for-peace-talks/7097

[5] Asian Lite Newsdesk, ‘Umar Mansoor warns of more attacks’. Asian Lite. 20th December 2014. Retrieved from: http://asianlite.com/top-news/umar-mansoor-warns-of-more-attacks/

[6] Ibid.6

[7] Accessejjhd online from: http://nacta.gov.pk/Download_s/__bannedOrgs_old.pdf , date of access: 14 July 2015

[8] Mir, Amir. ‘Umar Mansoor masterminded school carnage’. The News. 18th December 2014. Retrieved from: http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-2-290858-Umar-Mansoor-masterminded-school-carnage

[9] Sherazi, Zahir Shah. ‘Mystery surrounds reports over killing of TTP’s Tariq Afridi’. Dawn. 15th February 2014. Retrieved from: http://www.dawn.com/news/786250/mystery-surrounds-reports-over-deathkilling-of-ttps-tariq-afridi

[10]Peshawar school attack mastermind among 21 killed in Khyber Agency airstrikes’. Dunya News. 20th December 2014. Retrieved from: http://dunyanews.tv/index.php/en/Pakistan/250942-Peshawar-school-attack-mastermind-among-21-killed- 

[11] Mir, Amir. ‘Architect of APS carnage plotted mosque attack’. The News. 15th February 2015. Retrieved from: http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-2-301843-Architect-of-APS-carnage-plotted-mosque-attack

[12] Ibid.

[13] Shanker, Sneha. ‘Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan Faction Tariq Geedar Attacked PIA Flight in Peshawar: Officials. International Business Times. 27th June 2014. Retrieved from: http://www.ibtimes.com/tehrik-e-taliban-pakistan-faction-tariq-geedar-attacked-pia-flight-peshawar-officials-1613452

[14] Shoaib Hasan, Syed. ‘Pakistan Massacre Organizer Vows More Killings’. The Wall Street Journal. December 18th, 2014. Retrieved from: http://www.wsj.com/articles/pakistan-taliban-vows-more-killings-of-military-children-1418927695

[15] Mehsud, Saud. ‘Pakistan’s most hated man: volleyball player, child killer’. Reuters. December 19th 2014. Retrieved from: http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/12/19/us-pakistan-school-commander-idUSKBN0JX1CX20141219