The leader of a notorious terrorist group, the one who was believed to be behind the planning and execution of the horrific Army Public School massacre, has been killed.
Umar Khalid Khorasani, the chief of an offshoot group of Pakistani Taliban called Jamaat-ul-Ahrar (JuA), was confirmed dead by a spokesperson of the terrorist outfit on Thursday.
JuA spokesperson, Asad Mansoor, revealed that following a drone attack in Paktia, a province in Afghanistan, recently, Khorasani died of serious injuries from the attack. He confirmed the news of his leader’s death while talking to the AFP over phone from an unknown location.
Mansoor also said that 9 more associates from JuA also lost their lives in the same strike.
About Umar Khorasani
Umar was one of the founding members of the Pakistani Taliban, also commonly known as Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). His real name was Abdul Wali and he used to work as a journalist in the Mohmand Agency before he decided to take up arms against the Pakistani state.
He started his nefarious terrorist activities by going after government backed militias in the Khyber Agency. As a military commander he quickly rose through the ranks in TTP. However, he was expelled from the group by Mullah Fazlullah – the current head of TTP who continues to elude the authorities – once he formed JuA.
During the ceasefire period agreed by the Taliban and the government in 2014, he continued to attack and violate the agreement, with one of his attacks in a Islamabad court killing 12 people.
He is responsible for planning and executing various attacks against military and civilian targets in various Pakistani cities.
He is also known as the planner of the infamous Army Public School massacre in Peshawar, which left 144 people dead, most of them innocent children.
His death by a US drone strike came soon after the rescue of the Canadian-American couple from Kurram Agency recently. Many observers say that US-Pakistan military and intelligence cooperation has resumed after that high profile hostage rescue, with ties between the two uneasy allies on the mend.
Sources say that the JuA has already announced his successor. It is believed that with Khorasani’s death, a painful chapter in Pakistan’s battle against terrorists has finally come to a close.