Uiguren Mikael Davuds (39) rolle i terrorcellen i Oslo kan bety at en nesten ukjent, marginal terrorgruppe, Turkistans islamske parti, TIP, har funnet veien til Norge. Selv for terroreksperter er dette en mystisk gruppering.

New York Times Edward Wong har gravd frem historikken bak den obskure gruppen.

Kineserne har lykkes å slå ned og eliminere organisert motstand i Xinjang-provinsen, dette, kombinert med at Vesten et stykke på vei godtar kinesernes definisjon av uigursk terror, har gitt militante uigurer en følelse av vestlig svik og overgivelse.

De kan ha fått et tilbud om samarbeid fra Al Qaida som de kan ha trodd kunne gi dem en billett til rampelyset, og dermed internasjonal oppmerksomhet om deres sak.

Opprinnelig het gruppen Øst Turkistans islamistiske parti, ETIP, på engelsk. De droppet «øst» og ble bare TIP.

Amerikanerne tok til fange noen uigurer da Taliban falt, og de ble sendt til Guantanamo. Flere havnet senere på stillehavsøya Palau.

Man trodde bare rester var igjen, men de senere år har TIP våknet til liv.

For years, Chinese officials have been blaming the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, or dongtu in Chinese, for violent acts in Xinjiang, though they say ethnic riots in 2009 were inspired by a Uighur businesswoman living in the United States, Rebiya Kadeer, and other subversive forces. Chinese officials do say that the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, or ETIM, was responsible for earlier episodes of violence, in particular a 2008 attack on paramilitary troops in the oasis town of Kashgar that resulted in the deaths of 17 officers. Under the administration of President George W. Bush, the State Department put the group on a terrorist watch list.

Some Western scholars of Xinjiang say Chinese officials exaggerate the threat from the group to justify crackdowns on the Uighurs. They say officials have never produced evidence that actually proves the group’s existence. But a terrorism analysis group based in Alexandria, Va., IntelCenter, said in 2008 that photographs and videos showed that a militant Uighur group existed — the Turkestan Islamic Party — and that it was the same group the Chinese officials kept citing.

The group originally called itself the East Turkestan Islamic Party, or ETIP, but after a transformation from 1998 to 2000, it removed the «East» from its name, IntelCenter said. No original materials from TIP have any mention of the ETIM name.

The group’s founder, Hasan Mahsum, was killed by the Pakistani Army in 2003. There was a surge in activity in 2008, during the prelude to the Summer Olympics in Beijing, when TIP released a video in which a masked man identified as Commander Seyfullah said TIP was responsible for bus bombings earlier that year in Kunming and Shanghai that killed 5 people and wounded at least 26.

In April 2009, the United States Treasury Department designated a Uighur militant named Abdul Haq as leader of TIP and a member since 2005 of the shura council of Al Qaeda. The United Nations had earlier made a similar pronouncement. The American government said Abdul Haq, also known as Maimaitiming Maimaiti, succeeded Hasan Masum in 2003 as the leader of TIP.

In January, a Predator airstrike in Afghanistan killed 15 TIP members — 13 Uighurs and 2 Turks, according to statements from TIP. Some Pakistani and Afghan officials said Abdul Haq was among those killed.

Det interessante fra et sikkerhetsperspektiv er at Al Qaida er i stand til å fange opp og utnytte en marginal militant nasjonalistisk-islamistisk gruppe.

«This plot matters because it shows that Al Qaeda’s ideology continues to resonate with a growing number of individuals from a variety of national backgrounds and, more importantly, successfully convinces them to conduct actual attacks in the real world,» Jarret Brachman, a counterterrorism adviser to the United States government, said in an e-mail message.

Nettopp denne særegenheten gjør at internasjonal ekspertise interesserer seg for cellen som er avdekket i Norge.

Chinese Separatists Tied to Norway Bomb Plot

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