The Pakistani Taliban have visited Syria to set up a base and to assess "the needs of the jihad", a Taliban official has told the BBC. He said that the base was set up with the assistance of ex-Afghan fighters of Middle Eastern origin who have moved to Syria in recent years. At least 12 experts in warfare and information technology had gone to Syria in the last two months, he said. Their presence in the country is likely to have a sectarian motive. Taliban factions feel that Sunni Muslims, who constitute a majority in Syria, are being oppressed by Syria's predominantly Shia rulers. Thousands of people have died in the year-long armed conflict in Syria between loyalists of the ruling Baath Party and those who want to overthrow it. The Pakistani government has not commented on the allegations. BBC News - Pakistan Taliban 'sets up a base in Syria'