The United States on Thursday said it was offering a $5-million reward for information on Mullah Fazlullah, the chief of the Pakistani Taleban militant group that has waged a decade-long insurgency in the South Asian nation.
The offer came amid worsening US-Pakistan relations, and coincided with a visit to Washington by Pakistan’s foreign secretary for talks expected to focus on boosting counter-terrorism cooperation and the US war strategy in Afghanistan.
Although Pakistani Taliban militants still unleash attacks, the group has lost control of all territory in Pakistan since its December 2014 attack on an army school that killed 132 children. The US State Department also offered rewards of $3 million each for information on Abdul Wali, the head of a Pakistani Taliban affiliate, and Mangal Bagh, the leader of an allied Pakistani militant group accused of attacking Nato convoys.
“Each of these individuals is believed to have committed, or to pose a significant risk of committing, acts of terrorism that threaten the security of the United States and its nationals,” the department said in a statement. Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The three militants pose threats to Pakistan, as well as US-led coalition troops in Afghanistan, the State Department said in its statement.