'ISI pressing Taliban to fight US'

'ISI pressing Taliban to fight US'

 “The ISI wants to arrest commanders who are not obeying (ISI) orders,” a Taliban commander in Kunar province was quoted as saying by The Wall Street Journal. “The ISI wants us to kill everyone — policemen, soldiers, engineers, teachers, civilians — just to intimidate people,” he said.

Citing US officials and Afghan militants, the report said the members of Pakistan’s spy agency are pressing Taliban field commanders to fight the US and its allies in Afghanistan.

“The explosive accusation is the strongest yet in a series of US criticisms of Pakistan, and shows a deteriorating relationship with an essential ally in the Afghan campaign.”


A senior Pakistani official, however, dismissed the allegation. “Whenever anything goes wrong in Afghanistan, ISI is to be blamed,” the official said. “Honestly, they see ISI agents behind every bush in Afghanistan.”

Now, the ISI’s motivation to keep friendly relations with the insurgents is believed to be desire to keep its leverage in Afghanistan when the US eventually leaves, as well as preventing India from getting cosy inside the war-torn country, the report said. The newspaper further pointed out that the suspicions against the ISI are once again renewed at a time when the US is shifting focus to the militants that have found sanctuary in the lawless tribal regions of Pakistan, which border Afghanistan.
The Taliban and Haqqani network are believed to be planning and executing the majority of their attacks from the safe havens in North Waziristan and South Waziristan tribal areas.

Earlier, a declassified White House report said Pakistan is not doing enough to combat terrorists in its restive tribal belt where some of the most wanted insurgents are hiding. “Pakistan continued to avoid military engagements that would put it in direct conflict with Afghan Taliban or al-Qaeda forces in North Waziristan,” the report said.