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Kabul urges Pakistan:

Steps aginst terrorism

AFGHANISTAN: Afghanistan urged neighbouring Pakistan to press ahead Tuesday with efforts to eliminate militant hideouts, regardless of the believed death of Taliban warlord Baitullah Mehsud.

Asked about Mehsud's reported death in a US drone attack, President Hamid Karzai's spokesman said Pakistan should not relax efforts to stop militants crossing the border, which Afghanistan calls the Durand Line.

The bottom line was that "the hideouts of those who are causing unrest inside Afghanistan from... neighbouring countries, be eliminated," Homayun Hamidzada told reporters.

This must be done "so destructive forces are not entering our country through the Durand Line," he said.

Afghanistan does not accept the border with its neighbour, which was drawn up by Britain in the 19th century and which Kabul says has robbed the country of swathes of land.

"Wherever the enemies of Afghanistan are killed is good news but as I said before, the main question is that the broad struggle against terror with the support of the neighbours must proceed," Hamidzada said. Pakistani and US officials believe Mehsud was killed last week but a top Taliban commander insists he is alive.

The Taliban came to power in Afghanistan in 1996 with the help of Pakistan but was toppled in the 2001 US-led invasion that sent many of their leaders fleeing across the border.

The extremists now orchestrate deadly attacks in Pakistan and Afghanistan, where their insurgency against the Western-backed government and foreign troops has now reached its deadliest.

Kabul, Wednesday, AFP

 

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