Money matters: Taliban strapped for cash as funding routes blocked
By Zia Khan, Express Tribune, February 28, 2011
ISLAMABAD: The Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) is facing a serious financial crisis since its slain founding leader Baitullah Mehsud combined several scattered groups from all over the tribal belt to form the most feared terror network of homegrown militants back in 2007.
“The Taliban have seriously run out of funds…they have hardly any money anymore,” at least three associates of the group said amid a surprising halt in their activities – suicide bombings and terror attacks across Pakistan and in parts of Afghanistan – in recent months.
Also mysteriously silent are long-cannoned guns from the artillery of Pakistani military that is involved in an operation against the TTP in their South Waziristan stronghold since 2009.
The TTP is apparently not able to fund its operations for the want of money, the group’s members told The Express Tribune.
“The group is in a fix even to keep its infrastructure comprising several thousand foot soldiers and a huge fleet of vehicles,” the members added.
“It seems the money has just stopped coming to them. All the avenues which they used to get funds through are not working for some time now,” one of the three said, describing how difficult the survival has been for the group.
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