Central & South Asia
Pakistan Taliban in overthrow call
Spokesman for group says Pakistan's rulers must be removed for aligning with the US.
Last Modified: 14 May 2010 16:29 GMT
Faisal Shahzad is suspected of carrying out the attempted Times Square bombing [AFP]

The Pakistani Taliban has in a new video called for Pakistan's rulers to be overthrown for following "America's agenda", warning that the US will soon "burn".

The group, which is allied with the Afghan Taliban, is accused of numerous suicide bombings killing hundreds of people across Pakistan.

But in the new video, Azam Tariq, a spokesperson for the Pakistani Taliban, denied responsibility for bombings in public places, saying authorities wanted to malign his fighters for such attacks.

He spoke of fighting in various places in Pakistan saying his men were holding their own and the security forces, which he said were being paid with US aid money, were suffering significant losses.

'Jihad will continue'

Sitting cross-legged on the ground in front of a rock face and speaking in Urdu, Tariq said the Pakistani people were being sacrificed for the sake of the US by their own government, which he called un-Islamic.

"Now is a time to remove them from power as soon as possible. All their policies are anti-Islam, anti-people," he said.

"Jihad will continue as long as the ruling coterie and the unholy army continue to follow the American agenda."

Washington claims the group, allied with al-Qaeda and operating out of Pakistan's northwestern border regions, was behind an attempted car-bomb attack in New York's Times Square on May 1.

Pakistan has been co-operating with US investigators trying to determine what links Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistani-American man suspected of carrying out the attempted Times Square bombing, may have had with groups in Pakistan.

However, Tariq, stopped short in the video from claiming or denying responsibility for the failed attempt. 

'US will burn'

He did not refer specifically to any attacks abroad, but said mujahideen "wherever they were, in any part of the world" were supporting each other.

"America has not imagined that it could face a car bomb on its territory," he said.

"The car did not explode. But, one day such a car will explode in America. On that day, America will not be the only target.

"All the countries allying with the US will be targeted. America will burn along with its allies."

The Washington Post reported that authorities in Pakistan had arrested a man linked to the Pakistani Taliban who said he helped Shahzad travel to northwest Pakistan for bomb-making training.

It was not clear if the newspaper was referring to a man officials said earlier was detained in the southern city of Karachi on May 4.

The Pakistani government has denied that any arrests have been made in connection with the case but security officials said the man held in Karachi, Mohammad Rehan, was suspected of having taken Shahzad to northwest Pakistan to link up with the Taliban.

In Washington, Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, said despite Pakistan's recent improved efforts to tackle the Taliban, it must do more.

"We think that there is more that has to be done and we do fear the consequences of a successful attack that can be traced back to Pakistan," she said.

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