London, June 29 (ANI): The recent killing of Taliban leader Qari Zainuddin, who had been staying in a compound provided by Pakistan's ISI security agency, has uncovered a complicated and dangerous double game that Pakistan has been playing, The Independent reports.
Last week, an assassin- apparently dispatched by Pakistan's enemy no.1 Baitullah Mehsud- stormed into Zainuddin's room and opened up with a volley of fire. The militant leader was rushed to a nearby hospital but declared dead.
On the funeral of the 26-year-old, who in recent months had pitched himself against Mehsud, his brother Misabhuddin vowed to reporters that he would take revenge against Mehsud, he also let slip something else.
"Jihad against America and its allies in Afghanistan will continue as well," the report quoted him, as saying.
Zainuddin, himself a Taliban leader who supported al-Qaeda and jihad against Western troops in Afghanistan, had recently been recruited by the Pakistani authorities to join their battle to kill Baitullah Mehsud, who has emerged as the country's deadliest militant.
In essence, Islamabad is recruiting anti-American fighters to bolster a joint US-Pakistani operation.
"The forces that have been recruited by Pakistan to attack Baitullah Mehsud are our enemies. The Pakistanis are looking to use one militant against another. So you have people such as Zainuddin and Maulvi Nazir [another militant recruited previously by Islamabad] who are Pakistan's allies. But the problem is that they are the US's enemies because they are supporting attacks in Afghanistan," said Christine Fair, a Washington-based analyst.
The arrangement underlines the competing strategic priorities in the region for Pakistan and the US, even as their leaders opt in public for the language of common interests and shared enemies.
"Pakistan just wants to concentrate on the Pakistani Taliban. They do not want to go after the Afghan Taliban. The US wants to put the Pakistan-Afghanistan border under control. They have totally different goals. And the issue is not resolvable," said Giles Dorronosoro, a regional expert at the Carnegie Endowment. (ANI)