Bombs struck three Afghan cities, including the capital Kabul, killing at least 10 policemen reports claimed on the 10 Nov 14. In Kabul, a magnetic bomb planted in a flower bed near a university injured three people, while seven police were killed in eastern Logar province when a suicide bomber blew himself up at the provincial police headquarters dressed as a police officer. In eastern Nangarhar province, three policemen were killed by a bomb planted in a rickshaw. Kabul is regularly hit by Taliban bombings, with the military, police and government officials among those targeted despite heightening security with multiple checkpoints, guard posts and armed convoys. 361 COMMENT: With Afghan security forces now taking a greater lead in their countries defence against the Taliban attacks of this nature will continue in an attempt to wear down the police and army and probe areas where a greater attack can be carried out. There will also be a larger propaganda issue in an attempt to prove to others and recruiters that the Afghan government can be beaten. COMMENT ENDS
India – More than 50 people were killed and at least 100 injured in a suicide bombing close to Pakistan's only border crossing with India it was reported by the BBC on the 3 Nov 14. The blast hit near the checkpoint at the Wagah border crossing, near Lahore. The Pakistani Taliban said it had carried out the attack, although other militant groups - including Jundullah - also said they were responsible. The Wagah crossing is a high-profile target, with large crowds gathering every day to watch an elaborate flag-lowering ceremony as the border closes. Mushtaq Sukhera, the Punjab police chief, stated that the blast had happened when a suicide attacker approached a restaurant after the day's ceremony. Dozens of people use the Wagah crossing to enter India and Pakistan every day as it is the only road crossing between the two countries. It is also a crucial trade facility, where truck-loads of goods coming from and going to India are loaded and unloaded.
India's navy has withdrawn two warships from the eastern port of Calcutta after intelligence agencies warned of a terror attack plot it was reported on the 5 Nov 14. The navy said the ships had been ordered back into the sea because of "operational reasons". But a Coast Guard official said that they had received a warning about a possible attack on the port. Two warships, INS Khukri and INS Sumitra, had been docked at the port in Calcutta for the public as part of ceremonies in the run-up to Navy Day next month but were moved back to the sea on the 4 Nov 14 navy spokesman Captain DK Sharma said. The move came as the city and the port were alerted about a possible terror attack, reports stated. "We received a fax on the 4 Nov 14 afternoon from central intelligence agencies warning of the possibility of a terror attack in Calcutta, especially in the port area," senior Indian Coast Guard official BN Mahato said. Although no details of the alert were available, Calcutta Police Chief Surajit Kar Purkayastha said security had been tightened at the port and parts of the city on the basis of "alert" by federal intelligence agencies. 361 COMMENT: During the 361 reporting period 15 Sep 14 it was pointed out that al-Qaeda in the Subcontinent had attempted to take over a navy ship in Pakistan’s Karachi navel dock yard but were unsuccessful. This latest threat may be a result of that failed operation. By attacking the Indian navy ships and securing one it would be a huge propaganda claim not only to put to bed the previous failed attempt but would be an excellent recruitment claim for the group. It would also place al-Qaeda in the Subcontinent in an excellent position against its current terrorist rival ISIL. India and Pakistan need to take the threat seriously regarding this group and it maybe necessary to require both countries to put their differences aside and start to cooperate and exchange intelligence on the group in order to beat them. Both countries, more so India, have more than their fair share of terrorist groups in their respective countries. Pakistan can do without more acts of terrorism especially as NATO withdrawals from Afghanistan. COMMENT ENDS
Decrypted communications between Indian Mujahideen (IM) and al-Qaeda and testimony from suspects have triggered alarm among intelligence officials in New Delhi that the groups appear to be working together to launch major attacks in the region a report in the British press stated on the 7 Nov 14. Officials said that plots they had uncovered included the kidnapping of foreigners and turning India into a "Syria and Iraq where violence is continuously happening". Allegiances between Islamist militant groups can be murky and fleeting, and providing concrete proof of operational ties is notoriously difficult. But Indian security agencies said evidence they had gathered pointed to growing ties between al-Qaeda and IM, a home-grown movement hitherto known for low-level attacks on local targets using relatively crude weapons like pressure cooker bombs. Weeks after al-Qaeda announced the formation of a South Asia wing to strike across the subcontinent; agencies said they had discovered IM members were training with al-Qaeda and other groups in Pakistan and Afghanistan for major attacks. That increases the risk of a more dangerous form of militancy in the world's biggest democracy, which has been largely spared the kind of violence that regularly rocks its neighbour Pakistan and, beyond it, Afghanistan. Security officials cite the terrorist attack on the 2 Nov 14 deadly suicide bombing on the Pakistani side of a border crossing with India, and a terror alert on the 4 Nov 14 at two eastern ports that forced the Indian navy to withdraw two ships, as evidence that militant co-ordination and activity are on the rise (see 361 Comment on India). "The thing we are looking for is how al-Qaeda/ISIS tie up with local groups, especially as the drawdown takes place in Afghanistan," said Sharad Kumar, head of the NIA (National Investigation Agency), the country's main counter-terrorism arm. IM has also been urged by al-Qaeda to open a base in Burma to avenge attacks on Rohingya Muslims, said the charge sheet prepared by the NIA, which has gathered hundreds of pieces of evidence of Internet conversations and meetings between militants in India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Internet chats, which the United States helped Indian investigators to decipher, reveal tensions between IM and Pakistan's powerful Inter-Services Intelligence agency, which India says has nurtured the group with finance and equipment. In one conversation, Riaz Bhatkal, one of the founders of IM now based in the Pakistani city of Karachi, tells his men that it was important to build direct ties with al-Qaeda, cutting out Pakistan agents whom he described as "dogs". He talks about visiting al-Qaeda leaders in the tribal belt on the Afghan-Pakistan border, despite ISI orders not to do so. "It has been clear for some time that there is no group that is fully within ISI control. They are all itching for independent action, some want to have a go at us immediately," said an Indian security official. Pakistani officials deny they have links with the militants. "This is an outdated story. It does not serve any purpose for Pakistan to support such groups," said a senior intelligence official in Islamabad, requesting anonymity as he was not authorised to speak to the media about the issue. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/al-qaeda/11213127/Al-Qaeda-preparing-for-major-attack-in-India.html)
On the 11 Nov 14 it was announced that the Kamatapur Liberation Organisation (KLO), a militant group which operates in West Bengal and Assam and is fighting for a sovereign state, had been declared a banned terrorist group by the Indian government. In a gazette notification, the Home Ministry said that exercising the powers conferred under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, the central government proposes to add Kamatapur Liberation Organisation and all its formation and front organisations as a terrorist organisation. KLO, which came into existence in 1993 had been consolidating its position in the fourteen districts in Assam and six districts in West Bengal both organisationally and in terms of weapons and cadres and to achieve the objective of a separate "sovereign Kamatapur state". The group was also resorting to terrorism in the form of killing of innocent civilians and security forces and engaging in other violent activities including looting, kidnapping, landmine and bomb blasts, the notification said. KLO was formed to address problems of the Koch Rajbongshi community and perceived neglect of Kamtapuri language, identity and grievances of economic deprivation of the community.