The American CIA Director Mike Pompeo said the United States would launch the Taliban in peace talks in Afghanistan. But Pakistan must first ensure that the fighters can not establish safe ports within their borders.
In a speech at the Foundation for Defense of the Democracies on October 19, Pompeo in Washington said that the Taliban can win on the battlefield in Afghanistan. But he said that this will not happen as long as the militants can build sanctuaries in Pakistan.
The United States will make every effort to bring the Taliban to the negotiating table in Afghanistan. The Taliban have no hope that they can win this thing on the battlefield, “he said.” To do that, you can not have a safe port in Pakistan. ”
US officials have long accused Pakistan of ignoring the presence of the Afghan Taliban and its allied Haqqani extremist network on its territory – a charge Islamabad denies.
Apparently, Pompeo for the first time revealed that the Central Intelligence Agency believes that a US Canadian couple abducted by Afghan fighters in Haqqani in 2012 was held capitally in Pakistan for five years before being released last week.
His statement that the American Caitlan Coleman and her Canadian husband, Joshua Boyle, had been detained for five years in Pakistan, disagreed with the reports of Pakistani officials who had saved the family in Pakistan last week, just after coming from Afghanistan.
Pompeo’s statements against Pakistan reflect the new strategy of US President Donald Trump to force Islamabad to free its border area from extremist groups to make an attempt to win or end the 16-year US war in Afghanistan.
Washington has threatened to cut military aid and take other punitive measures against Islamabad, including sanctions against Pakistani officials with links to militant organizations.
Islamabad has described US-American strategy as a “scapegoat” for Pakistan’s failure of the war. But Pakistani officials have also announced last week the rescue of the hostage as an example of their intensified cooperation with Washington.
“I think the story would suggest that the expectation of the Pakistanis to help us fight the radical Islamic terrorism should be at a very low level,” Pompeo said.
“I think we should have a very real conversation with them about what they should do and what they should do, and American expectations of how they should behave,” he said.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will travel to Islamabad next week. Tillerson said on October 18 that the United States is expecting Pakistan to “take decisive action against terrorist groups”.