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Pakistan Says U.S. Warning On Al-Qaeda Unsubstantiated


A Pakistan soldier guarding the Afghan-Pakistani border (file photo) (epa) July 18, 2007 -- Pakistan says a new U.S. intelligence report that concludes Al-Qaeda is regrouping in northwest Pakistan is unsubstantiated and not helpful.


In a statement today, Pakistan's Foreign Ministry asked Washington to provide it with "concrete" information so it can "firmly act."


The National Intelligence Estimate -- released July 17 -- argues that crumbling state control over Pakistan's border region with Afghanistan has provided Al-Qaeda with a hideout from which to plot attacks on the United States.


Meanwhile today, new violence broke out in Pakistan's northwestern tribal region of North Waziristan. Militants detonated a remote-control bomb and opened fire on a military convoy, killing at least 12 soldiers.


The day before, a suicide bomber struck a security checkpoint in the same region, killing three soldiers.


(AP, Reuters, AFP)

Afghanistan And Pakistan

Afghan President Hamid Karzai (left) with Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf in Islamabad in October 2005 (epa)

ACROSS A DIFFICULT BORDER. The contested border between Pakistan and Afghanistan is some 2,500 kilometers long and runs through some of the most rugged, inhospitable territory on Earth. Controlling that border and preventing Taliban militants from using Pakistan as a staging ground for attacks in Afghanistan is an essential part of the U.S.-led international coalition's strategy for stabilizing Afghanistan. Officials in Kabul have been pointing their fingers at Pakistan for some time, accusing Islamabad or intelligence services of turning a blind eye to cross-border terrorism targeting the Afghan central government. Many observers remain convinced that much of the former Taliban regime's leadership -- along with leaders of Al-Qaeda -- are operating in the lawless Afghan-Pakistani border region.... (more)


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