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Taliban will not Survive a Month if it lost its Sanctuary in Neighboring Pakistan, says Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

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Kandidat-kandidat presiden Afghanistan Ashraf Ghani (kanan) dan Abdullah Abdullah menandatangani kesepakatan mengenai pembagian pemerintahan persatuan di Kabul (21/9). VOA

December 7, 2016: Ashraf Ghani, the Afghan President said on Sunday that the Taliban insurgency will not even survive a month if it loses its harbor in neighboring Pakistan.
Ghani made the remarks, at an international conference in the northern Indian city of Amritsar, which is not quite far from Pakistan border.

According to Reuters, “Pakistan said while violence had increased in Afghanistan, blaming another country for it didn’t help.”

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Last year, the highest number of civilian casualties and military-related deaths in the world was suffered in Afghanistan.

“This is unacceptable… Some still provide sanctuary for terrorists. As a Taliban figure said recently, if they had no sanctuary in Pakistan, they wouldn’t last a month,” Ghani said.

Analysts say, “Pakistan has historically backed the Afghan Taliban as a hedge against the influence of arch-rival India, with whom Pakistan has fought three wars, in its backyard.”
Pakistan does not agree to it, rather claims itself to be a victim of terrorism.

Tehrik-i-Taliban is one of the main groups carrying out attacks inside Pakistan. And, they were operating from Afghanistan.

Pakistan’s top foreign-policy adviser, Sartaj Aziz said,” It was true that there had been an upsurge in violence in Afghanistan.”

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“We need to have an objective and holistic view rather blame one country,” he told the conference.

By the conflict in Afghanistan, a number of people have been displaced this year, and it has surpassed half a million people, according to the United Nations reported last month.

Not only Taliban, Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attacks targeting minority Shi’ites in Afghanistan.

Ghani said, calling it an undeclared war in Afghanistan, “I don’t want a blame game, I want clarifications on what is being done to prevent the export of terror.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “Regional players had to act against not only the militants but their sponsors. It must be backed by resolute action. Not just against forces of terrorism, but also against those who support, shelter, train and finance them.”

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Indian officials said, “Islamabad has rejected the Indian allegations and said it was ready to hold talks with India on the dispute over Kashmir, but no talks are planned with Aziz while he is in Amritsar.”

– by NewsGram team

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US Will Deploy Necessary Resources to Counter Dangerous Actions by Iran, Says General

Tensions between Tehran and Washington have risen since the Trump administration last year withdrew from an international nuclear deal with Iran and began ratcheting up sanctions

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FILE - Then-Lt. Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr. testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Dec. 4, 2018. VOA

U.S. Central Command chief Gen. Kenneth McKenzie said Saturday that the United States would deploy the necessary resources to counter any dangerous actions by Iran, Sky News Arabia reported.

“We’re going to continue to reach out to our partners and friends in the region to ensure that we make common cause against the threat of Iran,” McKenzie, on an official visit to the Gulf region, was quoted as saying.

“I believe we’ll have the resources necessary to deter Iran from taking actions that will be dangerous,” he said, according to a transcript released by the Abu Dhabi-based channel. “We will be able to respond effectively.”

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Trump ordered the withdrawal of U.S. troops Syria in December after he said they had defeated Islamic State militants there. VOA

Tensions between Tehran and Washington have risen since the Trump administration last year withdrew from an international nuclear deal with Iran and began ratcheting up sanctions. Earlier this month, the United States blacklisted Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards.

Sanctions for oil purchases

Washington on Monday demanded buyers of Iranian oil stop purchases by May or face sanctions, ending six months of waivers that allowed Iran’s eight biggest buyers, most of them in Asia, to continue importing limited volumes.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and some senior military commanders have threatened to disrupt oil shipments from Gulf countries if Washington tries to strangle Tehran oil exports. McKenzie also said a reduction of U.S. troops in Syria would be done cautiously.

resources, iran
Tensions between Tehran and Washington have risen since the Trump administration last year withdrew from an international nuclear deal with Iran and began ratcheting up sanctions. VOA

“On the long term, we’re going to reduce our forces in Syria. We recognize that; that’s the guidance in which we are operating. That will be something that we will look at very carefully as we go forward,” the general said.

ALSO READ: Trump Urges Japan’s PM Abe to Produce More Vehicles in US

President Donald Trump ordered the withdrawal of U.S. troops Syria in December after he said they had defeated Islamic State militants there. In February, a senior administration official said the United States would leave about 400 U.S. troops split between two different regions of Syria.

McKenzie also said he was confident that the U.S. is going to have “a long-term presence in Iraq, focused on the counterterror mission.” (VOA)