`Pakistan Taliban`s claim of presence in Syria doubtful`
Washington: Syria`s main opposition group has said a Pakistani Taliban commander`s claim that his fighters are establishing a presence in Syria to battle against President Bashar al-Assad`s regime is doubtful.
The Syrian National Coalition questioned news reports, saying the Taliban have opened an office in Syria.
The group noted that a member of Taliban`s Shura Council has denied the development, calling it a rumour.
According to CNN, the coalition asked for a clarification about Taliban`s office in Syria and other news items about Islamist fighters.
Pakistani Taliban commander Abdul Rashid Abbasi had said that the first batch of fighters has arrived in Syria and established a command-and-control centre to launch operations alongside Syrian rebel fighters, the report said.
Ahmed Kamel of the Syrian National Council called the reporting part of a systematic and rapid campaign by pro-regime forces to smear the rebels, it added.
According to the report, Abbasi, a close associate of Pakistani Taliban leader Hakeemullah Mehsud, said that 120 fighters are already in Syria and another batch of 150 fighters will arrive this week.
He added that the fighters were sent after the Pakistani Taliban received a request from a top-ranking militant.
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