Extra US troops for Afghanistan no threat to Pak: Pentagon

January 31st, 2009 - 12:40 pm ICT by ANI  

Barack Obama

Washington, Jan 31 (ANI): The US Defence Department has said that deployment of additional American troops in Afghanistan is not a threat to Pakistan.

Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell said Defence Secretary Robert Gates was expected to give a recommendation on the proposal for additional troops to US President Barack Obama in the coming days.

Morrell told reporters here that the US had kept Pakistan informed of its intention to send additional troops to Afghanistan.

Absolutely, we are in close communication with our partners in Pakistan. But this certainly should not be viewed as any sort of threat to Pakistan. This should be viewed as a way to help them combat a problem in their midst as well, he said.

Morrell noted that Pakistan was as much concerned about the presence of terrorists in tribal areas, as the US or Afghanistan was.

The border in the tribal areas is too porous in both ways, in that militants and extremists are able to move freely back and forth, greater than either of us would like, The Dawn quoted him, as sayinghe said.

And so thats why we are seeing much better cooperation in terms of border security between us, the Afghans and the Pak military. So I dont think they should view it as anything but a positive if this comes to be.

Responding to another question, Morrell said that India was a significant political and economic partner of the Afghan Government.

But I couldnt tell you that I have any knowledge of a game plan for India to play a more pronounced role in Afghanistan. (ANI)

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