LAHORE - Key security services have spotted outlawed TTP and its major splinter Jamaat-ul-Ahrar activities at Pakistan border with Nuristan province of Afghanistan, security officials told The Nation yesterday.

The security services’ communication interceptions at Pakistan border with Afghanistan’s Nuristan province and intelligence dispatches of informants’ network spotted the accelerated activities of TTP and Jamaat-ul-Ahrar which could launch series of terror raids on Pakistani soil, they added.

In another alarming intelligence dispatch, movements of foreign fighters have also been spotted in Nuristan. Militants of Uzbek, Tajik and Arab origin have been seen near the bordering region of Afghanistan with Pakistan, according to the information shared by the security officials with the paper.

The terrorist outfits, in a bid to determine the readiness and strength of Pakistani security forces, sent more than a dozen infiltrators to cross into Pakistan from Nuristan. In the infiltration bid, five terrorists were killed in a gun battle with Pak Army troops in a remote land of Kalash Bamborat Valley in Chitral district on Wednesday. The remaining members of the terror gang slipped back into Afghanistan.

Following the intelligence dispatches, the security forces have been directed to take extraordinary measures to counter any untoward incident, said the officials.

Foreign fighters, a deadly element of the war against terror, are reported to be rallying behind Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, the offshoot of TTP, to make some foothold in bordering region of Pakistan with Afghanistan’s Nuristan province to undertake terror attacks.

The two terror bosses, Mullah Fazlullah of the outlawed TTP, and Omer Khalid Khorasani of Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, are reportedly moving in Kunar and Nuristan provinces of Afghanistan bordering with Pakistan during the recent weeks, they added.

Focusing on Nuristan hints at the danger of possible terrorists’ infiltration into the entire region of Chitral Valley and onwards to Gilgit-Baltistan, finally making bids to start trouble in Swat, said the security officials’ assessments following intelligence inputs.

Chitral is the largest district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, covering an area of 14,850kms. It shares border with Gilgit-Baltistan to the east, with Kunar, Badakhshan and Nuristan provinces of Afghanistan to the north and west, and with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa districts of Swat and Dir to the south. A narrow strip of Wakhan corridor separates Chitral from Tajikistan in the north.

According to the informants’ intelligence dispatches, Kamdesh district of Nuristan is housing the militants of TTP, Jamaat-ul-Ahrar and foreign fighters. The Afghan authorities claim Kamdesh falls in the areas to which writ of Kabul does not apply, said the security officials.

Mullah Fazlullah escaped to Kunar province of Afghanistan in the result of the second Swat operation codenamed as Black Thunderstorm or Rah-e-Rast launched in May 2009, which finally purged the valley of terrorists.

Omer Khalid Khorasani slipped into Nangarhar province of Afghanistan, escaping his killing or capture in the operation Zarb-e-Azb launched in June 2014 and the operations Khyber 1 and 2 to cleanse North Waziristan Agency and Khyber Agency of terror outfits.

Remaining terror targets on Afghan soil keep on moving after the killing of two high-profile terrorists, Umar Naray, the head of the TTP Geedar Group, and Mangal Bagh, the chief of Laskar-i-Islam, in two US drone strikes in Nangarhar, following leads from a premier intelligence service of Pakistan.

After the four-nation mechanism known as the Quadrilateral Cooperation and Coordination Mechanism (QCCM) in counterterrorism, it would be a challenge for Kabul to cleanse its soil of enemies of Islamabad, including high-value targets of Mullah Fazlullah, Omer Khalid Khorasani and others, said the security officials.

Pakistan, China, Afghanistan and Tajikistan formally agreed to a quadrilateral counterterrorism alliance on Wednesday at a meeting in the Chinese city of Urumqi. The meeting was attended by COAS General Raheel Sharif.

Kabul’s army used force when Pakistani security forces constructed a gate at Torkham border for better border management for counterterrorism measures.

According to the security agencies’ inputs of June, Afghan security service, NDS, had planned to increase its offensive operations at Durand Line, using TTP groups to engage Pakistan in an aggressive covert warfare to sabotage the border management arrangement.

NDS, the premier security service of Afghanistan, has the aid and assistance of Indian secret service, RAW, for launching covert offensives on Pakistani soil.

Extraordinary movements have been reported by the intelligence agencies’ informants at NDS stations in Nangarhar, Kunar, Nuristan, Paktia, Paktika, Helmand and Kandahar.