Following Baitullah’s death in August 2009, Pakistani intelligence officials reported that Mr. Rehman and Hakimullah had engaged in a gun battle that left one or both of them dead. That was proved untrue when both men posed for cameras at a press conference last October, though reports of rivalry between the two men persisted. The Pakistani government currently has a $600,000 bounty on Rehman's head.
According to Rifaat Hussain, a security analyst at the Quaid-e-Azam University in Islamabad, Rehman and others “may now be having second thoughts about mounting a leadership bid, perhaps fearing that he will meet the same fate as the previous two occupants of the post.”
The so-called father of suicide bombers and a top lieutenant of Hakimullah's, Qari Hussain was also reported to have been killed in a drone strike in Makeen, South Waziristan, last summer, but later reemerged in the October press conference alongside Rehman and Hakimullah.
A cousin of former leader Baitullah, Mr. Hussain’s reputation was built on running training camps for suicide bombers and directing a series of suicide bomb attacks in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) aimed at killing tribal elders and supplanting their rule.