US general’s allegation that the Afghan Taliban leadership is based in Quetta and Peshawar has been rejected by the top Pakistani ministers saying that the militants were using neighbouring Afghanistan as the launch pad for their operations.
Washington was aware of the Afghan Taliban leadership’s existence in the Pakistani cities, Gen John W Nicholson, the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan, told Afghan media outlet Tolo News.
He said that this issue is being talked in private by Pakistani and the US governments and support for insurgents and terrorists have to be reduced, has to be stopped.
The Taliban were using Afghanistan as their launch pad, said Pakistan interior minister Ahsan Iqbal responding to Nicholson’s allegations. The minister said that the Taliban had no necessity to hide in Pakistan since they held more than 40% of Afghanistan.
He further said, “If Taliban has control over so much resources and land in Afghanistan itself, it means they have hideaways there, not in Pakistan,” he said.
PM Abbasi to visit US in September
As per the government sources, Prime Minister of Pakistan Shahid Khaqan Abbasi is anticipated to visit the United States in the third week of September to attend the UN General Assembly session. PM Abbasi’s visit would come amidst boiling tension with the United States over its allegations that Pakistan provides safe shelters to militants, who attack US troops across the border in Afghanistan.