Pak must act against Afghan Taliban on its soil: US officials

Last Updated: Thursday, December 31, 2009 - 13:10

New York: The success of the planned troop surge in Afghanistan is directly related to whether the Obama administration can persuade Pakistan to carry out a determining operation against Afghan insurgents present on its soil, the Wall Street Journal has said, citing senior US officials.
US officials have also been pressing Islamabad to crack down against the ‘Quetta Shura’ of the Taliban, which Pakistan has so far refused to admit that they exist inside its boundaries.

“Pakistan’s military leadership needs to act against the Quetta Shura and the Haqqani network,” the newspaper quoted one US official, as saying, on conditions of anonymity.

“We’re trying to make them realise you can’t eliminate one and leave the other in place,” he added.

The Pakistan Army has been involved in an intense battle with the Taliban in South Waziristan and North West Frontier Province (NWFP), but it has hardly taken any action against the Afghan Taliban havens in the country’s northwestern tribal areas and southwestern province of Balochistan.

“To change that, there will be a concerted diplomatic effort to address the sanctuary problem,” said another senior US official, who is currently based in Afghanistan.

US CENTCOM chief General David Petraeus had also underlined that if Pakistan steps up pressure on the Afghan Taliban leadership hiding on the other side of the border, then it would greatly help the international forces fighting it out in Afghanistan

“It would be very helpful if additional pressure could be put (by Pakistan) on the leadership elements that are causing problems in Afghanistan,” General Petraeus had said in Bahrain earlier this week.


First Published: Thursday, December 31, 2009 - 13:10

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