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Pakistan - Unidentified flags

Last modified: 2021-01-09 by ian macdonald
Keywords: pakistan |
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In the days following the 11 September 2001 attacks on USA, and political the manoeuvering that followed, many demonstrations occurred in Pakistan.  At these demonstrations several flags were commonly seen, most of which we have been unable to satisfactorily identify.  We present these and more below, with the request that if you recognise any, you inform the editor of this page.

See also:

Party Sipâh-e-Sâhaba

The flags shown in the first section below appear to be related to the Party Sipâh-e-Sâhaba flag, although they are increasingly different from the flag reported by Michel Lupant on our page on the Party Sipâh-e-Sâhaba:

[UFE] by Santiago Dotor

In a recent TV report about a demonstration in Pakistan against US intervention in Afghanistan, I spotted a flag which I have been unable to find in FOTW. It is somewhat reminiscent of that of Jammu and Kashmir, but certainly different. It shows a green field with white crescent and star pointing to the bottom fly, with a canton made of seven (perhaps only five) stripes blue-white and the remaining half of the hoist (i.e., beneath the canton) red. The star is somewhat elaborate. I am in doubt as to the proportions of the flag, looking at the image I would think it was 1:2 rather than 2:3, but I seem to recall the hoist defacements certainly looked like two square areas as in my image,
Santiago Dotor, 19 September 2001

This flag has been reported before as a flag used in Pakistani-occupied Kashmir, perhaps even the flag of the Pakistani Kashmir. I'm not aware of any connection with the Taliban or Bin Laden's group.
Jorge Candeias, 19 September 2001

I believe the contributor is comparing this flag to that of the Azad Kashmir.  It is in fact quite different from the Azad Kashmir flag.
Santiago Dotor, 20 September 2001

[UFE] by Jorge Candeias

I've seen today this flag in the reports about demonstrations in Peshawar. It appeared here and there in the middle of a sea of Jamiat e Islami flags. I was paying close attention this time, and I came to a couple of conclusions somewhat different to Santiago's. For one, I'm almost positive that the stripes in the canton are white and black instead of blue and white. And then, it seemed to me that the "star" is curved rather than angular, sort of flower-like.

I do agree with Santiago's assertions about sizes and ratios. The red and black and white areas at the hoist are positively square, leaving another, larger, square at the hoist. The crescent, though, was placed as in the Pakistani flag, pointing 45º up and toward the fly, and the whole crescent+"flower" device seemed to me a lot larger than in Santiago's image.
Jorge Candeias, 28 September 2001

I also saw those images with several similar flags. I still have the impression that the stripes are dark blue, but not so dark as to be mistaken with black. I also agree about the orientation of the emblem, with respect to the recent TV images. However I am very sure that the first one I saw days ago had the emblem pointing to lower fly, as in my image. Most probably these flags do not have specifications, so that different handed- and industry-made versions co-exist. I believe the key elements to clear up would be the colour of the canton stripes and the orientation of the central emblem.
Santiago Dotor, 1 October 2001

I've seen this flag often, but never long and close enough to get a good look of the symbol. Until just now. I just saw in one of our channels' late night news a flag being waved in front of the camera and the symbol was very clear. And the conclusions are:
- The number of "points" is indeed 5. There's no doubt left about it;
- The "star" is not really a star, but quite flower-like instead;
- The shape of each point/petal is semicircular;
- The depressions are pointed
Of course, there's the possibility that this is simply a variation. But I'm absolutely positive that in that specific flag these were the characteristics of the symbol. It looked pretty professionally-made - no amateur stitching or painting.
Jorge Candeias, 15 October 2001

[UFE] by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán

This flag seems to be a variant of UFE 1 - it was seen on the TV news in Mexico. Black and white stripes over an orange square, the rest is green.
Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, 13 October 2001

[UFE] by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán

Another version lacks the red-orange square.
Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, 13 October 2001


This is probably a politically charged flag of Pakistani Islamists. It is a nearly square version of the flag of Pakistan, with a golden/yellow fringe and something written in yellow Arabic text below the crescent and star. The text is in the normal letters we see in Arabic websites and newspapers: longer than higher.
Jorge Candeias, 21 September 2001


This flag was seen accompanying the UFE 2 described above.  It is a "normal" flag of Pakistan, except that the crescent and star was slightly shifted to the bottom, and a white text written above. The letters here were very similar to the shahada as we see it in the Saudi and Taliban flags, so I guess it was the shahada.
Jorge Candeias, 21 September 2001

One would need images to comment. Note also that Urdu and Farsi (and other local languages) are also written in Arabic script, so the writing on the flags might not be in the Arabic language.
Al Kirsch, 21 September 2001


[UFE] by Jorge Candeias

Yet another Pakistani UFE spotted on TV images of anti-American demonstrations in that country. This one came in large numbers, so there's no doubt about the design: black with a white disc centered. Proportions seemed to be perhaps somewhat larger than 2:3, but since I'm not sure about that, I made my image with standard proportions.

It seems that the colours of the various groups that support the Taliban are basically black and white, but that the designs of their flags vary quite a bit from group to group (or from demonstration to demonstration?)
Jorge Candeias, 23 September 2001

I saw several flags like this, in the TV images of the big anti-government & anti-USA demonstration in Karachi (Pakistan). A plain black background with a centered big white circle. It was mixed with the black & white striped flags already commented. The protest was conducted by the religious movement Jamiat Ulama'a e Islam. at prayer day. I don't know the exact meaning of this flag.
Santiago Tazon, 14 October 2001

I come to the conclusion given the historical context of the entry in a time where ISIS (established in 1999) was starting to emerge and anti-US protests in the region were becoming often, especially after the US invasion of Afghanistan in October, 2001.
Esteban Rivera, 31 December 2020


[UFE] by Jorge Candeias

Another Pakistani political UFE, spotted on TV images yesterday. This time the demonstration was pro-governmental (and therefore pro-western). The flag was white with two narrow bars at the hoist, red and green.
Jorge Candeias, 27 September 2001

This flag is very similar to the Muttahida Quami Movement flag, but with different dimensions.


[UFE] by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán

Seen on the TV news in Mexico - this flag has green and white stripes; other flags seen were black and white, that of Jamiat Ulama'a e Islam.
Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán 13 October 2001


In a news report about the banning of Islamist parties and movements in Pakistan, I saw today a flag I couldn't identify. It was shot from afar and from a bad perspective, being hoisted in the top of a 3 or 4-stories building and shot from the street, so the description that follows is perhaps not very accurate. The flag looked 2:3, consisting of two horizontal areas, the top two-thirds white and the bottom third striped in vertical black and white stripes. I'm not sure how many stripes, but it I think there were 7 - 4 black and 3 white (there could have also been 9, though).
Jorge Candeias, 13 January 2002


[UFE] by Joe McMillan

Seen along the road between Islamabad and Peshawar in January 2003. Like the Pakistani national flag, but with the white stripe at the hoist narrower and separated from the hoist by a green stripe of about the same width.
Joe McMillan, 2 February 2003

I wonder if this is a variant of the flag of Jamiat al Islami or any related organization. The hoist is blue and fly green, but variants have been described from students, where the hoist was green and fly blue (always with white band between them) and perhaps there are even more variations.
Jaume Ollé, 2 February 2003

UFE 10

[UFE] by Joe McMillan

Seen along the road between Islamabad and Peshawar in January 2003. Black with four vertical white stripes, possibly just a vertical version of the JUI flag I posted earlier.
Joe McMillan, 2 February 2003

I have photos of a flag with 5 black vertical bands, but they don't reach the upper border. They stop before it and in the upper white part is a shahada and sword (shahada above and sword below).  Also there is the flag of El Jihad Tanzim with three vertical bands at hoist side. The fly part is white containing a black disk and within a white Arabic inscription.
Jaume Ollé, 2 February 2003

UFE 11

[UFE] by Joe McMillan

Seen along the road between Islamabad and Peshawar in January 2003. Black with white crescent and star and a red stripe at the hoist.
Joe McMillan, 2 February 2003

Might be the PPP flag. Sometimes the dark green is confused with black in the distance.
Jaume Ollé, 2 February 2003

UFE 12

[UFE] by Joe McMillan

Seen along the road between Islamabad and Peshawar in January 2003. Red with a white disk on the center.
Joe McMillan, 2 February 2003

UFE 13

[UFE] by Joe McMillan

Seen along the road between Islamabad and Peshawar in January 2003. Green with a white star on the center and a red stripe at the hoist.
Joe McMillan, 2 February 2003

UFE 14

[UFE] image located by Eric Farnsworth

In the New York Times, Sunday February 17 2008 issue, is a picture of a flag accompanying an article by Jane Perlez titled "Fears of More Violence as Pakistani Election Nears". The photo is credited to Max Becherer/Polaris, for the New York Times, and is captioned "Hired gunmen walk past the Chaudhry family residence in Gujrat, Pakistan on Friday."
Do you have any idea whose flag this is (presumably the Chaudhry family), and what that bicycle is doing on it? My wife said she recalled reading something that suggested that bicycle imagery was used during the British occupation of India as a symbol somehow denoting imperialism. I would be most grateful for any information you can find about this flag.
Eric Farnsworth, 2 March 2008

I can make a guess - because of the multilingual nature of both India and Pakistan, different political parties use graphic symbols to represent their party names - they are featured on ballot papers, for instance. Muharraf's party, the Pakistan Muslim League Q, uses a bicycle as its symbol. See:
James Dignan, 2 March 2008

Flag on FATA website

[UFE] image located by Valentin Poposki, 23 June 2008

This flag is shown on the FATA Education Sector website. Is it possible that this is FATA (Federally Administered Tribal Areas) flag?
Valentin Poposki, 23 June 2008

Green flag with radiating lines

[UFE] image located by Bill Garrison, 24 December 2010

Green Maple Leaf flag

[UFE] image located by Bill Garrison, 24 December 2010

Red-black-red flag

[UFE] image located by Bill Garrison, 24 December 2010

I am guessing this might the flag of the National Trade Union Federation, as proclaimed on the banner?
Rob Raeside, 24 December 2010