Tribal conflict in Waziristan limits al Qaeda's plans: Study

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London, Apr 23 (UNI) Waziristan in Pakistan, where core al-Qaeda are believed to have taken refuge, is so riven by tribal conflict that it cannot be used for waging global terrorism, the Telegraph reported a study conducted by a London-Based intelligence agency.

The findings of Exclusive Analysis claimed the assessment that Al-Qa'eda's central figures, possibly including Osama bin Laden and his Egyptian deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri, are thought to have taken refuge in the mountainous region and planning more attacks, might be exaggerated.

The tribal areas on Pakistan's north-west frontier have complete autonomy and a long history of Islamist militancy.

According to the agency's report, ''core al-Qa'eda'' might be doing little except buying their survival by allying with an endless array of factions in Waziristan's mosaic of tribes.

''Core al-Qa'eda is pursuing global ambitions, such as attacking Arab and Western governments, that are not shared by local tribal leaders. Indeed, the perceived violation of local tribal structures by foreign fighters would compromise their operations and therefore their capability to stage successful attacks.'' All these groups were far more concerned with fighting one another than helping al-Qa'eda to wage a global jihad, agency's Asia division head, Amarjit Singh, said, adding, ''Their main aims were to keep foreigners - including Pakistan's army - out of their domain and make money from smuggling guns and drugs.'' While al-Qa'eda's leaders have clearly been given hospitality, which under the local codes gives them absolute protection, they are also expected to refrain from endangering their hosts. Actively organising attacks on the West would not make them ''welcome'', said Mr Singh, and they would ''not necessarily be able to sustain themselves in that area''.

Terrorism experts have, however, questioned the study's analysis, arguing if Waziristan was such an unfavourable haven, then al Qaeda leaders would not have chosen to remain there.


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