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UN updates status on Ilyas Kashmiri,India’s most wanted: Reported dead

Security Council believes 313 Brigade chief died in June 2011 drone attack in Pak

Ilyas Kashmiri may still be on India’s list of most wanted Pakistan-based terrorists but the United Nations has taken a call that he be treated dead until proven otherwise.

In changes that were made to the Al Qaeda Sanctions list on May 10,almost a year after he was believed to have been killed in a US drone strike,the United Nations Security Council added a line changing his current status: “Reportedly deceased in Pakistan on 11 June 2011”. All references to him are now in the past tense.

The UNSC decision comes amid speculation in Pakistan that Kashmiri may be still alive. With Kashmiri,this has happened once earlier — US authorities claimed in September 2009 that he had been killed in drone attacks but he surfaced a month later.

This attack also finds mention in the FBI’s investigation of David Coleman Headley. In fact,Headley had made many attempts to verify reports of Kashmiri’s death. One of his contacts informed him three weeks later that the reports were incorrect.

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After the June 2011 drone attacks,Abu Hunzla Kashir,self-styled spokesman of Kashmiri’s 313 Brigade,put out a statement that their leader had been killed in the attacks. But weeks later it emerged that the photograph of a body,purportedly of Kashmiri,put out as part of the statement,was that of one of the 26/11 attackers.

But the fact that he has not been active in the past year has led most intelligence agencies to believe that he may have died.

First published on: 20-05-2012 at 01:49:42 am
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