Taliban's victory in Pak, Afghanistan to spell 'disaster for international security': NATO

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Brussels, Jan 27 (ANI): NATO's Secretary General De Hoop Scheffer has said that urgent attention is needed to be paid to South Asia as a victory for the Taliban in Pakistan and Afghanistan would be "a disaster for international security".

Speaking at the Security and Defence Agenda, a Brussels-based think tank, Scheffer warned that Western forces must prevail in Afghanistan.

"A Taliban victory in Afghanistan or Pakistan would be a disaster for international security and a legacy we cannot leave our children," he added.

In Afghanistan, a regional approach is needed, he said, with discussions involving all regional players - Pakistan, India, China, Russia, and also Iran.

He urged the NATO members to do more to help new US President Barack Obama tackle the growing threats of terrorism, weapons of mass destruction and failed states.

Scheffer highlighted proliferation in North Korea and Iran, warning that the latter was threatening to provoke "a nuclear domino effect" in the Middle East.

"The nuclear proliferation regime is eroding before us. North Korea is challenging the balance of power in Asia," The News quoted him, as saying.

Scheffer said NATO must engage with Iran to secure regional support for the escalating war in neighbouring Afghanistan.

Audience members asked de Hoop Scheffer to explain how Iran could be constructively brought into Afghanistan diplomacy, but he declined. "I'm not sure at this stage what form that would take," he said. "We need to stop looking at Afghanistan as if it were an island," de Hoop Scheffer said.

Meanwhile, NATO and Russia discussed new supply routes for alliance troops in Afghanistan in a meeting on Monday that helped to mend ties suspended after Russia's August war with Georgia. (ANI)

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