Kayani committed to act against Haqqani network: Mullen

Mike Mullen, in last 2-1/2 years, has travelled to Pak over two dozen times.

Updated: May 19, 2011, 12:42 PM IST

Washington: Pakistan Army Chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani is committed to act against the Haqqani network, Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen has said.

"He (Kayani) has committed to that," Mullen told reporters at Pentagon when asked about the reluctance on the part of Pakistan Army to take action against the Haqqani network.

"I think one of the issues that is just a challenge for us is our clock moves a lot faster than his clock. That has been the case so far, and I think it will be the case in the future. I am not trying to give him an excuse, but matching those clocks has been pretty difficult," Mullen said.

He reiterated that his statement, about a month ago in Pakistan, that there was a relationship between Pakistan`s spy agency ISI and Haqqani network still stands.

"I think my comments from a month ago still stand from that perspective. I was very clear about the priority for the leadership, in particular with respect to the Haqqani Network and the need to get at that. And I wouldn`t change that right now," he said.

Mullen, in last two and half years, has travelled to Pakistan more than two dozen times to have meetings with General Kayani and he boasts of good relationship with the Pakistan Army chief.

"From a standpoint of the relationship and in my discussions since the raid with General Kayani and other senior leader reaffirms the desire to have a relationship. But I think we both recognise it`s going through a very difficult time right now. So the specific steps that we need to take are yet to be determined," he said.

"I think we need to give them some time and space to work on some of the internal challenges that came out of this, while at the same time the things there are some near-term things that we think actions need to be taken," Mullen said.

"So certainly, I mean, he (Kayani) is not just a peer of mine, but he`s a friend and, you know, he`s been through a lot. And as the leader, I can tell you... at the top of these organisations it`s a pretty lonely place.”

"So from that standpoint, he`s out with his military. He`s working his way through that. And I am certainly sympathetic to his need to do that and at the same time move ahead," Mullen said.

PTI