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Saturday, February 4, 2012

Leaked NATO report


After British media leaked a classified US military report that stated Pakistan was backing the Taliban in Afghanistan, NATO has said the report does not represent an analysis of the current situation in Afghanistan. NATO attempted to downplay on Wednesday the implications of a secret US military report leaked to British media that suggests Pakistan is actively supporting the Taliban in Afghanistan. "The classified document in question is a compilation of Taliban detainee opinions," said Lieutenant Colonel Jimmie Cummings, a spokesman for NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). "It's not an analysis, nor is it meant to be considered an analysis." The report, published by Britain's The Times newspaper, says the Taliban is in a position to retake control of Afghanistan once ISAF troops withdraw from the country. All combat troops are scheduled to leave by 2014. The BBC also had access to the report and quoted it as saying "Pakistan's manipulation of the Taliban senior leadership continues unabatedly." According to the BBC, the report was compiled from 27,000 interrogations of more than 4,000 captured Taliban and al Qaeda operatives. Cummings said it was important to consider the context of the statements and not "to draw conclusions based on the Taliban comments." Abdul Basit, a spokesman for the Pakistani Foreign Ministry, said the allegations were "frivolous," and added Pakistan was committed to non-interference in Afghanistan. Pakistan's foreign minister, Hina Rabbani Khar, travels to Afghanistan on Wednesday for meetings aimed at repairing diplomatic ties between the two countries.

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