Action against Haqqani network: Sartaj Aziz to share ‘compelling’ data with Afghanistan

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan will confront Afghanistan with ‘compelling’ evidence of how the country’s security forces have successfully dismantled the Haqqani network from its tribal areas.

The details will be shared with Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani when Prime Minister’s Adviser on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz meets him today (Friday) in Kabul. Aziz is being accompanied by the director general military operations (DGMO), who will brief the Afghan leadership about ‘major gains’ against the Haqqani network.

A senior Pakistani official told  that security forces had dismantled the terror infrastructure of all militant outfits, including the Haqqani network, in the North Waziristan Agency.

“The Afghan leadership will be informed about this with compelling data,” the official, who asked not to be named, said. The move is part of efforts to dismiss propaganda against Pakistan that it is not doing enough to stop cross-border attacks.

The official said that it is unfortunate and regrettable that Afghanistan has not acknowledged “our sincere efforts to normalise ties”.

“Our assessment is that the majority of the attacks are now being planned from within Afghanistan,” the official said.

Islamabad is increasingly upset over Kabul’s accusations implicating the country’s security establishment in recent spate of attacks in Afghanistan.

The official on Thursday admitted that anti-Pakistan propaganda had undermined normalisation efforts and that current relations between the two neighbours were at the lowest ebb. He said the premier’s adviser during his meeting with the Afghan president will seek an immediate end to the “anti-Pakistan propaganda”. Aziz will convey to the Afghan president that implicating Pakistan’s security establishment in recent terror attacks will not help build the trust between the two countries.

The official said the anti-Pakistan diatribe also put the security of the country’s diplomatic staff stationed in Kabul at stake.

Relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan have soured in recent weeks after Kabul publicly accused Pakistan’s security establishment of orchestrating terrorist attacks in the war-torn country. Afghanistan has seen a sudden spike in violent attacks since Mullah Akhtar Mansoor became Taliban chief following the death of his predecessor Mullah Muhammad Omar.

The official said the news of Mullah Omar’s death was deliberately leaked by certain elements to undermine the Murree process. He said an eight-member Afghan Taliban delegation was already in Islamabad when the Afghan government pulled out of the second round of talks, which officials said could have paved the way for a ceasefire.

“The reconciliation is the only way forward,” the official emphasised, saying that Aziz will encourage the Afghan leadership not to abandon the dialogue process.

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