The United States (US) has warned of action if the superpower sees “international terrorists regrouping in Afghanistan” while saying that US’ broader goal was to make sure that “terrorists and others aren’t able to use Afghanistan as a launch pad for attacks on Pakistan.”
US State Department Spokesperson Ned Price, in a press briefing, stated: “We also have capabilities when it comes to counterterrorism in the region that does not leave us entirely beholden to the Taliban.”
He also mentioned the killing of the al-Qaeda leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri by a US strike in August this year to prove the superpower’s capabilities to act against terrorists.
The spokesperson also added that the Afghan Taliban had been “either unable or unwilling to live up to the commitments that they’ve made in a number of areas.”
Answering a question, Price said, “Of course, we’ve seen other groups also active. You mentioned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), among others. We are determined to work with our partners in the region, including Pakistan, to do what we can to take on the threat of terrorism in the region, and certainly the threat of terrorism that extends well beyond the region.”
Terming Pakistan an “important partner”, Price said that the US values its bilateral relationship with the country. “We welcome opportunities to expand cooperation in areas that are of mutual interest to us and to Pakistan. That, of course, does include when it comes to counterterrorism”, he added.
Earlier this week, Pakistan’s Head of Mission to Kabul Ubaid-ur-Rehman Nizamani escaped an assassination bid in Afghanistan. Last month, a suicide attack— for which TTP claimed responsibility— rammed a police escort for a polio vaccination team in Quetta.
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