ISI runs, controls network of suicide bombers in Afghanistan

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New York, Jul 26 (ANI): Pakistan's military spy agency, the ISI, has been accused of running the networks of suicide bombers that emerged as a sudden, terrible force in Afghanistan in 2006.

The documents, made available on Sunday by an organization called WikiLeaks, found the suspicions harboured by Americans fighting the war in Afghanistan that the ISI has guided the Afghan insurgency with a hidden hand, to be true.

The detailed reports indicate that US officials had a relatively clear understanding of how the suicide networks functioned, even if some of the threats did not materialize.

One report, from Dec. 18, 2006, describes a cyclical process to develop the suicide bombers, The New York Times reports.

First, the suicide attacker is recruited and trained in Pakistan. Then, reconnaissance and operational planning gets under way, including scouting to find a place for "hosting" the suicide bomber near the target before carrying out the attack.

Several of the reports describe current and former ISI operatives, including Lt. Gen. Hamid Gul, who headed the ISI from 1987 to 1989, visiting madrasas near the city of Peshawar to get recruits for suicide bombings.

One report describes an ISI plan to use a remote-controlled bomb disguised as a golden Koran to assassinate Afghan officials. Another report documents an alleged plot by the ISI and Taliban to ship poisoned alcoholic beverages to Afghanistan to kill US troops.

But the reports also charge that the ISI directly helped organize Taliban offensives at key junctures of the war. On June 19, 2006, ISI operatives allegedly met with Taliban leaders in Quetta, the city in southern Pakistan. At the meeting they pressed the Taliban to mount attacks on Maruf, a district of Kandahar that lies along the Pakistani border.

While the specifics about the foreign fighters and the ISI are difficult to verify, the Taliban did indeed mount an offensive to seize control in Maruf in 2006.

Afghan government officials and Taliban fighters have widely acknowledged that the offensive was led by the Taliban commander Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour, who was then the Taliban shadow governor of Kandahar.(ANI)

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