Islamabad: The Pakistani Taliban have threatened to attack installations of Shell Pakistan and the state-run Pakistan State Oil if the two firms do not pay a total of Rs 400 million within 20 days as extortion money, a media report said on Sunday.

"I had personally spoken to the Managing Directors of the Pakistan State Oil and Shell Pakistan and demanded that they arrange to pay us Rs 200 million each. Otherwise, I had warned them that we would start attacking their installations anywhere in the country," a senior Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan commander said.

The unnamed commander claimed officials of the two oil companies had sought time to consider the Taliban's demand. The commander further claimed the Taliban had never warned the companies to halt supplying fuel to NATO forces in Afghanistan.

He said officials of the companies "wrongly linked" the Taliban's threat to ending oil supplies to the foreign forces.

The commander claimed the PSO had issued a statement to the media that said the Taliban wanted the company to halt oil supplies to foreign forces in Afghanistan.

"It isn't true. We never asked them to stop fuel supply to the US or NATO forces in Afghanistan. We had nothing to do with whatever they are doing. I just asked them to pay us Rs 200 million within 20 days, otherwise we would target their installations," the commander was quoted as saying.

The commander said that instead of arranging the money, a managing director of one of the firms purchased a bulletproof vehicle for himself to avoid harm at the hands of Taliban.

"We know whatever they are doing to dodge us. They need to know that bulletproof vehicles would not save them from our fighters," the commander threatened.

Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan spokesman Ihsanullah Ihsan too called The News from an undisclosed location and made a similar demand. He said the Taliban had gathered information about installations of the oil companies and would launch attacks if their demand was not met.

Government officials in Peshawar refused to comment on the issue, saying only that they had heard about the PSO receiving threats.

(Agencies)