Pakistan, Afghanistan discuss joint border force

Pakistan and Afghanistan are discussing a possible joint force to combat militants on both sides of their border near Pakistan's tribal region, which has become a safe haven for al Qaeda and other groups, a senior Afghan official said on Monday.

Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak told reporters that such a force would include U.S. troops and address soaring insurgent violence that he said has stretched the capabilities of U.S., NATO and Afghan forces inside Afghanistan, reported Reuters.

"We should have a combined joint task force of coalition, Afghans and Pakistanis to be able to operate on the both sides of the border," Wardak said at the Pentagon during a visit to Washington to discuss a Kabul plan to nearly double the size of the Afghan army.

Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, said he had not heard the details of Wardak's proposal but said any effort to improve security in the border area was welcome.

"I think anything that impacts better security on that border is a good thing," he told reporters in Los Angeles.

"I am encouraged that a leader in Afghanistan has spoken out with this kind of idea," he said. "As in all these things, the devil will be in the details."

Mullen told Congress this month that he had ordered a new U.S. military strategy for the region that would for the first time encompass Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Wardak said the Afghan government had discussed the task force with Pakistani officials within the past several weeks. "They say they're looking at it," he said.

Speaking two days after a truck-bomb attack on Islamabad's Marriott hotel, Wardak said that given recent events in Pakistan, "everyone should realize we have a common threat, a common enemy and a common objective to achieve."

He noted that insurgent violence in Afghanistan rose three-fold from 2005 to 2007 and said, "2008 is going to be the highest among all."

The core of the insurgency consists of 10,000 to 15,000 fighters in Afghanistan, he said, not including those who operated outside the country in areas such as Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas, on the Afghan border.

"Now I think they're operating geographically in more areas and more provinces than before, and I think they have stretched the capability of the combined forces of ISAF, the coalition and Afghans," the defense minister said.

ISAF, NATO's International Security Assistance Force, totals about 47,000 troops including 13,000 Americans. An additional 20,000 U.S. troops operate in Afghanistan under a separate U.S. command.

U.S. commanders in Afghanistan have asked for three more combat brigades totaling around 10,000 troops. Washington, strapped by commitments in Iraq, plans to send one Army combat brigade and a smaller Marine force by February.

U.S. and Afghan officials blame the rising tide of attacks in Afghanistan partly on safe havens in Pakistan where they say militants are recruited and trained and cross-border actions are planned.

But there has been frustration in Washington over Pakistan's slowness to act against militants on its soil.

U.S. commandos crossed the border into Pakistan on September 3 to attack a suspected al Qaeda target that officials said was contributing to violence in Afghanistan. The operation raised an outcry from Pakistani officials who said women and children were among the 20 people killed.

"A terrorist does not recognize any boundaries," Wardak said when asked about the raid. "We have to deal with the sanctuaries and the real hide-outs of the terrorists, wherever they are."

Subscribe to Trend in Google News! Subscribe
Moscow welcomes ‘progress’ on Iran nuclear deal
Moscow welcomes ‘progress’ on Iran nuclear deal
Parties narrowing differences in Vienna talks - Iran's top negotiator
Parties narrowing differences in Vienna talks - Iran's top negotiator
Iran FM: Talks in Vienna proceeding in right direction
Iran FM: Talks in Vienna proceeding in right direction
Loading Bars
Latest
Goranboy regional prosecutor's office launches investigation into resident hitting mine
Resident of Azerbaijani Goranboy region hits mine
Erdogan receives Serbia's Vucic to discuss ties, Balkans
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens
Iran preparing plans on gas extraction from territory of Iranian Central Oil Fields Company
Azerbaijan confirms 930 more COVID-19 cases, 703 recoveries
Uzbekistan introduces new mechanisms to support its capital market
President Ilham Aliyev calls President Vladimir Putin
Kazakhstan launches investigative procedures against wholesalers of liquefied gas
Money transfers from Georgia up
Price indexes of construction, trade sectors at Uzbek stock exchange rise
Kazakh crude production inches up - OPEC
Uzbekistan sells number of its large enterprises as part of privatization program
Russian Economy Ministry unveils priority spheres for co-op with Azerbaijan
Kazakhstan approves operational action plan to stabilize internal socio-economic situation
Baku residents express their gratitude to President Ilham Aliyev for highly appreciating activity of Haji Zeynalabdin Taghiyev (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation holds general meeting (PHOTO)
Overall index of Tehran Stock Exchange drops on Jan. 18
Uzbekistan reveals volume of mortgage loans issued in 2021
Expenses of Turkish citizens in Georgia increase
SOFAZ’s budget revenues up
ANAMA talks heavily mined Azerbaijan's territories
SOFAZ sees significant increase in revenues from oil & gas agreements
Georgia reveals its major motor oil supplying countries
Azerbaijan’s State Oil Fund sees increase in assets
Growth of Azerbaijan's non-oil sector reaches all-time high
Chief of General Staff of Azerbaijani Army meets with Bulgarian delegation (PHOTO)
Iran’s Bahar Azadi gold coin price rebounds
FAO eyes another Partnership Programme on Food and Agriculture project in Turkmenistan
Azerbaijan to see increase in asylum seekers - deputy chairman of Supreme Court
Central Bank of Azerbaijan works consistently to curb inflation
Iran unveils amount of honey gathered countrywide
Kazakhstan’s Atyrau Oil Refinery to buy gaseous nitrogen via tender
Kazakhstan's economic growth is expected to accelerate in 2022 - Renaissance Capital
New military facilities commissioned in Azerbaijani liberated territories (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Azerbaijan increases marketable oil and gas production
Russia starts manufacturing reactor for Kudankulam nuclear power plant
Number of foreigners receives labour permits in Azerbaijan - State Migration Service
Azerbaijan eyes to raise quota for issuing labor permits to foreigners this year - State Migration Service
India at UNSC: Looking forward to Sudan's successful completion of transition phase
Uzbekistan notes growth in macroeconomic indicators
Jaishankar speaks with EU counterpart, discusses Afghanistan, Myanmar
OPEC expects Azerbaijan to boost oil output in 2022
UK regulator fines Mastercard, others for prepaid cards cartel
PM Modi: Best time to invest in India, multilateral institutions need reforms
Ministry unveils number of companies with Russian capital in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijani citizens without COVID-19 passports won't be allowed to buy tickets for bus trips to liberated lands
Azerbaijan creates website for trips to liberated Karabakh
Iran strikes deal with Romania for export of technical, engineering services
No mine threat in Azerbaijan's Shusha - ANAMA
Gas transportation through South Caucasus Pipeline increases
Azerbaijan plans to demine tens of thousands of hectares of liberated territories - ANAMA
USAID’s support can increase foreign direct investment in Turkmenistan - official
UNHCR thanks Azerbaijan
Indian Prime Minister delivers ‘State of World’ special address at World Economic Forum’s Davos Agenda
Largest philanthropist not only in Azerbaijan, but also in South Caucasus is Heydar Aliyev Foundation - President Ilham Aliyev
Kazakhstan discloses systematic measures to reduce inflation rate
Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan's oil transportation from Azerbaijan down
I was offered few alternative locations for statue, and I chose this place, because it is place worthy of name of Zeynalabdin Taghiyev - president
Kazakhstan's President Tokayev to be elected chairman of Nur Otan party soon - First President of Kazakhstan
By sending hundreds of students to Russia and Europe, Haji Zeynalabdin Taghiyev clearly thought about future - President Ilham Aliyev
As result of Heydar Aliyev Foundation's activities, Azerbaijan is better known, and it was this factor that helped us during Second Karabakh War - President Ilham Aliyev
Today, Heydar Aliyev Foundation faces new tasks - President Ilham Aliyev
Sinopec gets first LNG cargo under new deal with Qatar
Brent to breach $100/bbl as demand weathers virus surge- Goldman Sachs
Azerbaijan ranks among top aviation fuel exporters to Georgia
I'm on deserved rest in capital and haven't left anywhere - first president of Kazakhstan
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for January 18
Russia documents 31,252 daily COVID-19 cases, highest number since December 6
USAID supports Turkmen government and local partners to improve securities market
Websites that will make the work of Graphic Designers easier
UNHCR discloses number of Azerbaijani refugees provided with legal assistance before Second Karabakh War (PHOTO)
Production of Iran's Khorasan Steel Company increases
National Iranian Oil Company to take steps on development of North Pars gas field
Azerbaijan fils lawsuits against Armenia to European Court of Human Rights
Non-OPEC crude oil supply to continue upward trend by 2023
Visitors from Azerbaijan to Georgia spend less in 2021 - NBG
Europe to see increase in jet fuel demand – JP Morgan
Iran’s NISOC announces date for launch of extraction from Kish gas field
Israel sticks with 4th vaccine shot, sees Omicron wave waning in a week
Uzbek Central Bank shares data on volume of reserve assets and gold reserves
Azerbaijani public representatives send appeal to French President
Iran's economic growth improves - CBI
Oil demand set to rise by 2023, says JP Morgan
Central Bank of Iran discloses amount of loans issued for agricultural sector
Azerbaijan increases wine imports from Georgia
Epsilon obtains industrial gas inflow from new well at field in Uzbekistan
AFAB Cataract Campaigns on Int’l Day of Elderly in Niger (FOTO)
JP Morgan expects Azerbaijan’s oil output to decline in 2022-2023
Amount of loans issued by Iranian banks soars
NIOC intends to extract gas from Iran-Saudi Arabia joint Farzad B gas field
Azerbaijani FM leaves for Austria on working visit
Iran sees increase in trade turnover with ECO member states
UAE bourses open in red after Houthi attack on Abu Dhabi
Time of market test for Greece-North Macedonia gas pipeline announced
Azerbaijan holding talks on regular flights to Fuzuli Int’l Airport – deputy minister
Georgia reveals wine export growth dynamics in strategic markets
Azerbaijan reveals procedure of buying tickets for bus trips to liberated lands
Trips to Azerbaijan's liberated areas on all routes to be carried out in one day - ministry
At first stage only Azerbaijani citizens allowed to visit Karabakh – deputy minister
All news