Pakistan

WASHINGTON (News Desk) – The Pentagon has said that existence of safe havens for terrorists such as Haqqani Network in Pakistan and Islamabad’s inability to take action against the militant group is affecting US-Pakistan bilateral ties and other security programmes.

In its biannual report, the US military headquarter noted that Defence Secretary Ashton Carter did not provide certification that Pakistan had taken action against the Haqqani Network, which is why the Pentagon had withheld $300 million in Coalition Support Funds from the country during the ongoing US fiscal year, which ends on September 30.

“The US continues to be clear with Pakistan about steps it should take to improve the security environment and deny safe havens to terrorist and extremist groups,” the report said while adding that “these conversations continue to affect not only the US dialogue with Pakistan on security as well as stability in Afghanistan.”

Alleging that safe terrorist havens still exist in Pakistan, the Pentagon said groups including Taliban, al-Qaeda, AQIS, the Haqqani Network, Lashkar-e Tayyiba, Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, IS-K, and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan have sanctuaries and operational existence in Pakistan.

The report also urged Pakistan to play a role in countering terrorist threats in the region. The report has now been forwarded to US Congress, which will decide on possible debate on it.