December 4, 2017 6:56:47 pm
America’s spy chief has said that Pakistan’s policy of using terrorists as a leverage against India and Afghanistan has not changed and the US will do everything it can to ensure that terror safe havens no longer exists in Pakistan. CIA Director Mike Pompeo told Regan National Defence Forum in California over the weekend that this is the message that Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis was tasked to deliver to Pakistan during his meetings with the top Pakistani leaders.
“Mattis will deliver the message that says We would love you to do that. That is that safe haven inside of Pakistan has worked to the detriment of our capacity to do what we needed to do in Afghanistan and in the absence of the Pakistanis achieving that we’re going to do everything we can to make sure that that safe haven no longer exists,” he said.
Appearing on the same panel, former CIA director and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said that Pakistan has always been a problem. “It’s been a safe haven for terrorists who come across the border and attack in Afghanistan and then go back into Pakistan. We have made every effort possible during the time I was there to convince Pakistan to stop it,” he said.
But Pakistan remains unconvinced, he added. “Pakistan has this kind of two-edged approach to dealing with terrorism. On the one hand yes they don’t like terrorism where the attacks from terrorists in their country. But at the same time, they don’t mind using terrorists as leverage to deal with Afghanistan and to deal with India. That’s the policy that they’ve been involved with,” Panetta said.
“So, Pakistan has always been a question mark,” he said and hoped that Mattis and Pompeo are successful in making clear to the Pakistanis that they’ve got to be able to seal their border and they have to be able to go after the terrorists within their own territory.
“Unless that happens we are going to continue to have problems in it,” Panetta said.
Pompeo said that nothing has changed with regard to Pakistan when it comes to using terrorist as a leverage to deal with Afghanistan and India. “Not yet,” he said.
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