Three weeks after the deadly ending of the Red Mosque crisis in Islamabad, where more than 100 people were killed, armed men in the northern Mohmand agency took control of a local shrine and renamed it the Red Mosque, the Pakistani daily The Nation reported.
"It is part of our strategy to initiate an organized struggle… to get rid of those who have made the country a U.S. colony," said the leader of the 150-strong armed group, Omar Khalid.
The group took control of a famous shrine, which was named after Haji Sahib Turangzai, who led a freedom fight at the beginning of the 20th century.
Khalid called on the Pakistani people to participate in a holy war against the U.S. and its allies.
A senior political official from the Mohmand agency confirmed the information regarding the attack, but did not disclose further details.
The Mohmand agency is located near the Afghani border, in the Federally Administrated Tribal Area (FATA) district. Since 2001 many Taliban and Al-Qa’ida members, who fled neighboring Afghanistan have found refuge in tribal areas close to the border.
Despite the Pakistani army’s steps to fight the Islamist radicals in the northern districts, the U.S. recently announced it would unilaterally move into Pakistan to fight the "terrorists."
Pakistan President Gen. Pervez Musharraf has strongly rejected the U.S. plan, as did the Pakistani parliament, which last Saturday passed a resolution which called for the cessation of the country’s war on terror if the U.S. went ahead with its plan.