Jalaluddin Haqqani

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Jalaluddin Haqqani
جلال الدين حقاني
Born c.1950
Paktia Province, Afghanistan
Allegiance Haqqani network, Mujahideen
Years of service 1970's to present

Soviet war in Afghanistan

War on Terror:

Relations Sirajuddin Haqqani (son)

Mawlawi Jalaluddin Haqqani (Pashto: جلال الدين حقاني‎) (born c. 1950) is the leader of the Haqqani network, an insurgent group fighting against US-led NATO forces and the government of Afghanistan. He also fought in the 1980s Soviet war in Afghanistan, including in the Operation Magistral. By 2004, he was directing pro-Taliban militants to launch a holy war in Afghanistan and hit government targets inside Pakistan.[1] Steve Coll, author of Ghost Wars, claims that Haqqani introduced suicide bombing in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region.[2][3]

Early years[edit]

Haqqani was born in or about 1950 in the Paktia Province of Afghanistan. He is an ethnic Pashtun from the Jadran tribe. After King Zahir Shah's exile and President Daoud Khan rise to power in 1973, the political situation in Afghanistan was slowly beginning to change. A number of parties such as the People's Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA) and others were seeking power. Haqqani was one of them, and after becoming suspected of plots against the government he went into exile and based himself in and around Miranshah, Pakistan. From there he began to form a rebellion against the government of Daoud Khan in 1975.[4] After the 1978 Marxist revolution by the PDPA, Haqqani joined the Hezb-i Islami of Mawlawi Mohammad Yunus Khalis.[1] It was during this time that Haqqani began to build a relationship with the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) spy network.[2]

Mujahideen commander[edit]

In the 1980s, Jalaluddin Haqqani was cultivated as a "unilateral" asset of the CIA and received tens of thousands of dollars in cash for his work in fighting the Soviet-led Afghan forces in Afghanistan, according to an account in The Bin Ladens, a 2008 book by Steve Coll. He reputedly attracted generous support from prosperous Arab countries compared to other resistance leaders.[5] At that time, Haqqani helped and protected Osama bin Laden, who was building his own militia (al Qaida) to fight Soviet-backed Afghanistan.[6]

The influential U.S. Congressman, Charlie Wilson, who helped to direct tens of millions dollars to the Afghan resistance, was so enamored of Haqqani that he referred to him as "goodness personified".[7] He was a key US and Pakistani ally in resisting the Soviet-backed Afghanistan. Some news media outlets report that Haqqani even received an invitation to, and perhaps even visited, President Ronald Reagan's White House,[8][9][10] although photographs erroneously reported to show evidence of this meeting have cast doubt that Haqqani ever visited the US.[11][12] (The pictures originally purporting to show this meeting are, in fact, of Mohammad Yunus Khalis.)[13][14][15]

During the rule of Najibullah in 1991, Haqqani was the first resistance leader to capture the city of Khost from the Afghan government. After the fall of Kabul to the Mujahideen forces in 1992, he was appointed Justice Minister of the Islamic State of Afghanistan.

Relations with the Taliban[edit]

Haqqani was not originally a member of the Taliban. In 1995, just prior to the Taliban's occupation of Kabul, he switched his allegiance to them. In 1996-97, he served as a Taliban military commander north of Kabul, and was accused of ethnic cleansing against local Tajik populations.[16] During the Taliban government, he served as the Minister of Borders and Tribal Affairs and governor of Paktia Province.[17]

In October 2001, Haqqani was named the Taliban's military commander. He may have had a role in expediting the escape of Osama Bin Laden. With his base in Khost under repeated American air attack, it is believed that in November or December of that year he crossed the Durand Line border into the Waziristan region of Pakistan. Four Guantanamo detainees -- Abib Sarajuddin, Khan Zaman, Gul Zaman and Mohammad Gul—were captured and held because American intelligence officials received a report that one of them had briefly hosted Haqqani shortly after the fall of the Taliban.[17][18][19][20] After the Karzai administration was formed in December 2001, in which many former warlords, mujahideen, and others took part, Interim-President Hamid Karzai decided to offer Haqqani a position in government but was rejected by Haqqani.[1]

In 2008, CIA officials confronted Pakistani officials with evidence of ties between Inter-Services Intelligence and Jalaluddin Haqqani[21] but the ISI denied the allegations.[22] A September 2008 airstrike which targeted Haqqani, resulted in the deaths of between ten and twenty-three people. The US missile strike hit the house of Haqqani in the village Dandi Darpa Khail in North Waziristan and a close-by seminary.[23][24] The madrasah, however, was closed and Haqqani had previously left the area.[24][25] Haqqani has been accused by the United States of involvement in the 2008 Indian embassy bombing in Kabul and the February 2009 Kabul raids.[26]

Role in the Taliban insurgency[edit]

The success of the mujahideen fighters in the two-year Waziristan Conflict against the Pakistani para-military forces pressured the government to agree to the 2006 Waziristan Accord. In the absence of political will to confront militants with regular Pakistan Army units, a cease-fire agreement (allowing Taliban fighters to operate with impunity in Waziristan as long as Pakistani law is followed and the Taliban do not launch raids into neighboring Afghanistan) was reached.[citation needed] The local Taliban, identified by some as the Islamic Emirate of Waziristan,[27] appear to have been strengthened by the cease-fire agreement, as well as the release of some fighters detained by the Pakistani government at the start of hostilities.

Haqqani along with son Sirajuddin are currently the commanders of the Haqqani network, which is believed to be based in Waziristan, Pakistan.[28] The network is made up of insurgent-suicide bombers waging a jihad against US-led NATO forces and the Islamic republic of Afghanistan. On 16 October 2011, "Operation Knife Edge" was launched by NATO and Afghan forces against the Haqqani network in south-eastern Afghanistan. Afghan Defense Minister, Abdul Rahim Wardak, explained that the operation will "help eliminate the insurgents before they struck in areas along the troubled frontier".[29]

Personal life[edit]

Haqqani is fluent in Persian,[30] Arabic,[31] Urdu and his native Pashto language. He has at least five sons:

  • Sirajuddin Haqqani who assumed leadership of the Haqqani network after Jalaluddin Haqqani.
  • Badruddin Haqqani – younger brother of Sirajuddin. He was killed in a US drone strike on 24 August 2012.[32][33][34]
  • Nasiruddin Haqqani – He was a key financier and emissary of the network. As the son of Jalaluddin's Arab wife, he spoke fluent Arabic and has traveled to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates for fundraising.[35][36] He was killed by unknown assailants in Islamabad, Pakistan, on 11 November 2013.[37]
  • Mohammed Haqqani - Younger brother of Sirajuddin Haqqani. He was a military commander of the network. He was killed in a US drone strike on February 18, 2010.[38][39]
  • Omar Haqqani - the youngest son of Jalaluddin Haqqani. He was killed leading Haqqani Network fighters during a US military operation in Khost province in July 2008.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Syed Salaam Shahzad (5 May 2004). "Through the eyes of the Taliban". Asia Times. Retrieved 10 February 2009. 
  2. ^ a b Return of the Taliban, PBS Frontline, 3 October 2006
  3. ^ A. Gopal, Who are the Taliban? in: Nation, Volume: 287 Issue: 21 (22 December 2008) p20
  4. ^ "Questions Raised About Haqqani Network Ties with Pakistan". International Relations and Security Network. 26 September 2011. Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  5. ^ Ex-CIA allies leading Afghan fight vs. G.I.s, New York Daily News, 2 December 2005
  6. ^ 'US attack on Taliban kills 23 in Pakistan', International Herald Tribune, 9 September 2008. Retrieved on 10 September 2008.
  7. ^ 'Who are the Taliban?', Retrieved on 7 December 2008.
  8. ^ "Haqqani was once a White House guest!". Indiavision news. 28 September 2011. "Reports quoted Pakistan’s Interior Minister Rehman Mallik saying, “The network’s aging leader, Jalaluddin Haqqani, was a respected commander and key US and Pakistani ally in resisting the Soviet Union after its 1979 invasion of Afghanistan. Haqqani even visited President Ronald Reagan at the White House.”" 
  9. ^ Toosi, Nahal (29 December 2009). "Haqqani network challenges US-Pakistan relations". Associated Press. Retrieved 25 October 2011. 
  10. ^ Handel, Sarah (3 October 2011). "Who Are The Haqqanis?". NPR (NPR). Retrieved 1 November 2011. 
  11. ^ Yusufzai, Rahimullah (30 September 2011). "Khalis, not Haqqani, was photographed with Reagan". The News International. Retrieved 24 October 2011. "Haqqani then was much younger and had a thick black beard. More importantly, he had never been to the US. He certainly was a well-known mujahideen commander of the Hezb-e-Islami (Khalis) — a party led by Maulvi Yunis Khalis, and had a status equal to another famous commander Ahmad Shah Masood. But Haqqani wasn’t in the same league as the Afghan mujahideen leaders who were invited to the White House in Washington and hosted by President Reagan." 
  12. ^ "Why Pakistan's media needs a code of conduct". BBC News. 23 October 2011. Retrieved 25 October 2011. "More recently, an image of a bearded man wearing a substantial white turban and a brown blazer standing next to former US President Ronald Reagan was reprinted in many Pakistani dailies as an image of Reagan with the notorious Afghan militant Jalaluddin Haqqani. But Haqqani has never visited the US. The picture, is in fact of an Afghan mujahideen commander called Younis Khalis." 
  13. ^ "Dawn’s $118 mistake". Pakistan Media Watch. 29 September 2011. 
  14. ^ "Jalaluddin Haqqani Never visited America". BBC Urdu. 28 September 2011. 
  15. ^ "Clarification: Younus Khalis, not Jalaluddin". Dawn. 1 October 2011. 
  16. ^ Griffin, Michael. "US Post-Taleban Plans Hit Problems". Institute for War and Peace Reporting. Retrieved 11 October 2012. 
  17. ^ a b Summarized transcripts (.pdf), from Mohammad Gul's Combatant Status Review Tribunal - - mirror - pages 1-12
  18. ^ John F. Burns (2 February 2002). "Villagers Say Errors by U.S. Causing Grief For Innocent". New York Times. Retrieved 7 January 2009.  mirror
  19. ^ Summarized transcripts (.pdf), from Abib Sarajuddin's Combatant Status Review Tribunal - pages 36-41
  20. ^ Summarized transcripts (.pdf), from Gul Zaman's Combatant Status Review Tribunal - mirror - pages 39-53
  21. ^ "C.I.A. Outlines Pakistan Links With Militants", by Mark Mazzetti and Eric Schmitt, July 30, 2008, New York Times
  22. ^ "Pakistan denies 'malicious' report on CIA confrontation", July 30, 2008, Agence France Press
  23. ^ Newhouse, Barry (8 September 2008). "Suspected US Missile Strike Hits Taliban Commander's House". Voice of America (Voice Of America). Retrieved 8 September 2008. 
  24. ^ a b Shahzad, Syed Saleem (9 September 2008). "US's 'good' war hits Pakistan hard". Asia Times Online. Retrieved 9 September 2008. 
  25. ^ Perlez, J. & Shah, P.Z. 2008, 'US attack on Taliban kills 23 in Pakistan', International Herald Tribune, 9 September. Retrieved on 10 September 2008.
  26. ^ The Telegraph - Calcutta (Kolkata) Embassy blast link to Kabul strike
  27. ^ Moreau, Ron; Zahid Hussain (2006). "Border Backlash". Newsweek international edition. MSNBC. Archived from the original on 2007-01-02. Retrieved 20 September 2006. 
  28. ^ Khan, Ismail (22 June 2006). "Forces, militants heading for truce". Dawn. Retrieved 29 September 2006. 
  29. ^ Push launched against Haqqanis in border areas
  30. ^ Special meeting between Haqqani and Abdul Ali Mazari mazari 1/6 (video made before 1995).
  31. ^ The Long Hunt for Osama, Atlantic Monthly, October 2004
  32. ^ "Pakistani Officials Confirm Death of Key Militant". Time Magazine. AP. 30 August 2012. Retrieved 31 August 2012. 
  33. ^ Karen DeYoung (29 August 2012). "U.S. confirms killing of Haqqani leader in Pakistan". The Washington Post. Retrieved 11 October 2012. 
  34. ^ http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2013/09/taliban_confirm_deat_1.php
  35. ^ Khan, Zia (22 September 2011). "Who on earth are the Haqqanis?". The Express Tribune News Network. Retrieved 23 September 2011. 
  36. ^ Roggio, Bill (22 July 2010). "US adds Haqqani Network, Taliban leaders to list of designated terrorists". The Long War Journal (Public Multimedia Inc.). Retrieved 1 November 2011. 
  37. ^ http://tribune.com.pk/story/630360/senior-haqqani-network-leader-killed-near-islamabad/
  38. ^ http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2010/02/jalaluddin_haqqanis.php
  39. ^ http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2010/02/senior_al_qaeda_mili.php

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