Pakistan Pushes Taliban to Keep Fighting: Report

Militants say ISI threatens to arrest them if they don't
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 7, 2010 8:43 AM CDT
Pakistani fire fighters try to extinguish fire engulfed NATO oil tankers after militants attacked a terminal in Nowshera near Peshawar, Pakistan, Oct. 6, 2010.   (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad)

(Newser) – Pakistani intelligence has been actively pressuring the Taliban to continue fighting in Afghanistan, even threatening to arrest them if they don’t, Afghan militants tell the Wall Street Journal. Taliban commanders say pressure from the ISI is one of the main reasons that few have taken the Afghan government up on its offer to find them jobs if they lay down their arms. US officials say they’ve heard similar accounts from captured militants and those accepting the jobs.

“The ISI wants to kill everyone—policemen, soldiers, engineers, teachers, civilians—just intimidate people,” one Taliban commander said. When he refused, he says the ISI tried to arrest him. The explosive allegations could worsen already deteriorating relations between the US and Pakistan. But a top Pakistani official scoffed at the report. “Whenever anything goes wrong in Afghanistan, ISI is to be blamed,” he said. “Honestly, they see ISI agents behind every bush in Afghanistan.”

For more on the recent troubles with Pakistan, click here.

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