Militants fleeing PoK camps, to enter Kashmir
15 September 2001
New Delhi: Even as the US gets ready to strike the terrorist camps in Afghanistan, Kashmiri militant camps in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) bordering Afghanistan, have been closed temporarily. Trainee militants are dispersing to different safer areas, according to sources. ''Although Pakistan may agree to co-operate with the US, the terrorists have started moving away from these camps to safer areas,'' a source said. ''In the eventuality of strikes aiming the camp sites, there will be no losses as terrorists are vacating their camps,'' he added. At present, Pakistan has 37 terrorist trainee camps, whereas there are another 49 in the PoK. In Afghanistan, there are 22 Pakistan-run camps. Intelligence sources in J&K say, nearly 5,000 terrorists are heading towards Kashmir. ''We have intercepted messages that they are headed for this place as it would serve their purpose of getting away from the camp and, if need be, able to create largescale attacks here,'' the source said. Most of the camps being vacated belong to Hizb-ul-Mujahideen, Harkat-ul-Mujahideen, Harkat-ul-Jehadi Islami, Tehreek-e-Jehadi-Islami, Muslim Mujahideen and Jaish-e-Mohammad. According to sources, most of the mercenaries, especially from Afghanistan, have also been asked to shift to Kabul to fight on behalf of Taliban in case of a US-led NATO attack. The terrorists camps in PoK provide training for 3-6 months. These camps generally have Kashmiri recruits and only a few are hand picked for advanced training in the camps bordering Afghanistan. These camps provide deadly commando training which takes up to one year.