'60 Taliban leaders escaped to Middle East'

While activists of nationalist parties in the Sindh province blocked roads on the border with Punjab to stop the influx of people displaced by the military operation in Swat, the Taliban’s second-rung leadership travelled to Karachi by train and then flew to Middle Eastern countries.

Sleeper cells of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan in Karachi facilitated the travel of at least 60 militant leaders and arranged air tickets to the Middle East for them, The Daily Times newspaper quoted its sources as saying.

Some of those who travelled to the Middle East via Karachi were close to Taliban leaders Muslim Khan and Maulana Fazlullah and were part of the militants’ decision-making council. A sizeable number of people from Malakand division, which includes Swat, work in the Middle East.The newspaper quoted its sources as saying that the Karachi wing of the Taliban hosts militants from other provinces, provides logistics support and recruits new members.

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