'Under fire' Kayani says 'terror sanctuaries' harboured in Afghanistan, not Pakistan

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Kabul, Aug 12(ANI): In an attempt to deflect international condemnation regarding the existence of 'terror sanctuaries in Pakistan', Army Chief General Ashfaq Kayani has brushed aside the accusation by claiming that terrorist groups were rather using 'safe havens' inside Afghanistan.

During a daylong meeting of the Tripartite Commission in Kabul on Monday, Kayani also called for adequate steps to purge Afghanistan of the terrorists' havens.

The meeting was also attended International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Commander General David H. Petreaus and Afghan National Army Chief General Sher Muhammad Kirmi.

Kayani further pointed out the measures taken by the Pakistan Army on the Pak-Afghan border to curb illegal border crossings, but said he was disappointed over the lack of adequate security checkpoints on the Afghan side of the border, The Nation reports.

The Army Chief also rubbished media reports of the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) supporting the Taliban, said that they were unfounded and baseless allegations against Pakistan's premier intelligence agency.

Earlier, last month, Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai had urged his Western allies to destroy the militant sanctuaries in Pakistan.

"The time has come for our international allies to know that the war against terrorism is not in Afghanistan's homes and villages, but rather this war is in the sanctuaries, funding centres and training places of terrorism which are outside Afghanistan," Karzai said.

"Whether we are able to destroy these sanctuaries or not is another question. We will try what we can. Our international allies have this ability, but the question is why they are not doing it," he added.

The Afghan government has long claimed that Pakistan is playing a double game, supplying a vital land route for NATO equipment into Afghanistan while tolerating the Taliban in and around the city of Quetta.

Afghan security officials have also frequently accused the ISI of involvement in attacks inside Afghanistan. (ANI)

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