Country Report on Terrorism 2016 - Chapter 6 - al-Qa’ida in the Indian Subcontinent

aka al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent; Qaedat al-Jihad in the Indian Subcontinent

Description: On July 1, 2016, the Department of State designated al-Qa’ida in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO). AQIS is an affiliate of al‑Qa’ida that focuses on terrorist activity in Bangladesh, India, and Pakistan. Its leader is Asim Umar, a former member of the FTO Harakat ul-Mujahidin.

Activities: AQIS claimed responsibility for the September 6, 2014, attack on a naval dockyard in Karachi, in which militants attempted to hijack a Pakistani Navy frigate. AQIS has also claimed attacks against activists and writers in Bangladesh, including U.S. citizen Avijit Roy, U.S. Embassy local employee Xulhaz Mannan, and Bangladeshi nationals Oyasiqur Rahman Babu, Ahmed Rajib Haideer, and A.K.M. Shafiul Islam.

Strength: Total membership is unknown.

Location/Area of Operations: Primarily Afghanistan and Pakistan, with elements operating in Bangladesh and India.

Funding and External Aid: AQIS likely receives funding from al-Qa’ida senior leadership and engages in general criminal activity, kidnapping, and extortion.