Clinton has intense discussions with AFPAK team

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Washington, Oct.3 (ANI): US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had a "very intensive," three and a half hour AFPAK discussion in the secure Principals Conference Room in the Ops Center on Friday.

According to Politico, among those who participated in the discussion were Special Representative for Pakistan and Afghanistan Richard Holbrooke, his deputy Paul Jones, senior advisor Vali Nasr, special defense advisor Vikram Singh, deputy secretaries of state Jim Steinberg and Jack Lew, Assistant Secretary of State for South Asia Bob Blake, Clinton chief of staff Jake Sullivan and deputy policy planning chief Derek Chollet, plus US Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry and Ambassador to Pakistan Anne Patterson and senior embassy leadership via secure video.

Clinton was presented briefings on a range of issues from COIN to civilian surge to Afghan election and broader diplomatic strategy, and there was lots of give and take and many questions including from the Secretary in what an advisor called a "very intensive" discussion.

The White House has scheduled three more AFPAK inter-agency meetings at the White House this week that Clinton, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and other principals and key advisors are due to attend.

The official declined to give Clinton's views on the policy review underway, saying she's reserving her advice for the President.

Previous reports have indicated she has at least previously supported the more expansive counterinsurgency approach advocated by Holbrooke and US commander in Afghanistan General Stanley McChrystal. (ANI)

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