Today, Secretary Clinton designated Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) and designated it as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist under E.O. 13224. The Secretary also designated two senior TTP leaders, Hakimullah Mehsud and Wali Ur Rehman, as Specially Designated Global Terrorists under E.O. 13224. Secretary Clinton took these actions in consultation with the Attorney General and the Secretary of the Treasury. These actions will help stem the flow of finances to TTP and provide the Department of Justice with a critical tool to prosecute those who knowingly provide material support to TTP and its senior leaders.
The Rewards for Justice Program has announced a five million dollar reward for any information leading to the arrest of Mehsud or Rehman. Additionally, the Department of Justice has filed an arrest warrant for Hakimullah Mehsud and charged him with conspiracy to murder U.S. citizens abroad and conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction.
TTP is a Pakistan-based terrorist organization that has claimed responsibility for numerous terrorist acts against Pakistani and U.S. interests, including a December 2009 suicide attack on a U.S. military base in Khowst, Afghanistan, which killed seven U.S. citizens, and an April 2010 suicide bombing against the U.S. Consulate in Peshawar, Pakistan, which killed six Pakistani citizens.
TTP and al-Qa'ida have a symbiotic relationship; TTP draws ideological guidance from al-Qa'ida, while al-Qa'ida relies on TTP for safe haven in the Pashtun areas along the Afghan-Pakistani border.
During a briefing this afternoon on the U.S. Government's continued efforts to disrupt and dismantle TTP, Ambassador Daniel Benjamin, head of the Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism, said, "The various actions taken today against the TTP support the U.S. effort to degrade the capabilities of this dangerous group. We are determined to eliminate TTP's ability to execute violent attacks and to disrupt, dismantle, and defeat their networks."
You can read the full announcement of this morning's designation here. More information about the rewards leading to the location of Hakimullah Mehsud and Wali Ur Rehman is available here. A transcript of the briefing with Ambassador Benjamin and Robert Hartung, Assistant Director of the Threat Investigations and Analysis Directorate in the Bureau of Diplomatic Security, is available here.
Questions about the designation process? Myths and facts about it are explained in this fact sheet.