Next 12 to 18 months crucial for US’ AFPAK policy: US

May 24th, 2009 - 1:53 pm ICT by ANI  

Taliban Washington, May 24 (ANI): The United States considers the next 12 to 18 months as critical to the success of its revamped AFPAK policy.

Addressing an off the record briefing, in which the briefer is not identified, a top US military official said the next year and half would crucial for the US led ‘war on terror’ against Al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan.

He also made it clear that the Obama administration would continue targeting militant hideouts in Pakistan and Afghanistan, using the Predator drone aircrafts.

“The US military liked drones because they are effective, relatively cheap and keep pilots out of danger,” the official said.

He also informed that Washington is mulling over a new ‘rotational approach,’ in Afghanistan which would create a cadre of experts in Afghanistan by rotating the troops in and out of the region.

Meanwhile, the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman, Admiral Mike Mullen, warned that President Obama’s decision to send in about 21,000 more troops to Afghanistan may bring new militants to Pakistan from the neighbouring country.

Admiral Mullen said the United States had no option other than to push back the Taliban harder in Afghanistan despite the possible negative impact of such a drive on Pakistan.

“They want Afghanistan back. We can’t let them or their Al-Qaeda cohorts have it,” The Dawn quoted Admiral Mullen, as saying.

He said the Taliban’s aim was to govern the region.

“It’s not just about instilling fear or spreading violence. They want Afghanistan back,” Admiral Mullen added. (ANI)

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