Stop misuse of Afghan territory against Pakistan: spokesman

    By IANS,

    Islamabad : Pakistan Wednesday said Afghanistan should not allow its soil to be used against it, days after the Pakistani Taliban elected a new chief who operates from the neighbouring country, according to Pakistani officials.

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    Paistan foreign ministry spokesman Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry Wednesday said Pakistan has made it clear to Afghanistan several times that it should not allow the use of its territory against Pakistan.

    “We are confident that Afghanistan will take the required steps in this regard,” the spokesman said at his weekly briefing when asked about the presence of the new chief of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, Fazalullah, in Afghanistan.

    Pakistani Taliban elected Maulvi Fazalullah as the chief following the killing of Hakimullah Mehsud in a US drone attack Nov. 1.

    Fazalullah, who had led his fighters in Swat valley in 2009 in a bloody campaign against the Pakistani forces, later fled to Afghanistan and regrouped his fighters in the border province of Nuristan, Pakistan, security officials say.

    The army says Fazalullah’s fighters have carried out a series of deadly attacks on Pakistani border posts and killed dozens of soldiers and civilians in the border regions.

    Fazalullah appeared in a video last month and claimed responsibility for the roadside bomb attack that killed Maj. Gen. Sanaullah Niazi of the Pakistan army in Dir district in September.

    Kabul has never officially confirmed the presence of Pakistani militants and Afghan foreign ministry spokesman, Janan Mosazai, said Sunday that Afghanistan would never allow its territory to be used against neighbours, particularly Pakistan.

    Responding to another question, Chaudhry said a visit to Kabul by Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is on the cards but no dates have been fixed yet.

    When asked about the whereabouts of Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the spokesperson said he was in Pakistan and could contact his family members.

    “Pakistan had released Mullah Baradar to advance the Afghan peace and reconciliation process,” he said, adding that Pakistan would continue to play a positive role in the Afghan peace and reconciliation process.