US Vows Unilateral Action Against Haqqani Network As Pakistan Demands Joint Action And Responsibility

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Context

The US has vowed unilateral action against Haqqani network in Pakistan. The Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Wednesday warned the United States would retaliate against the group which is believed to be responsible for recent deadly attacks in Kabul. US and Afghan forces battled the group earlier this week in a 19-hour assault, in which the US embassy and NATO headquarters were targeted. The militant group is also believed to be behind the truck bombings on Saturday, which wounded 77 American troops.

The US has expressed unhappiness with Pakistan’s efforts in dealing with the terrorist network, which continues to have a safe haven in the country.
“Time and again we’ve urged the Pakistanis to exercise their influence over these kinds of attacks from the Haqqanis. And we have made very little progress in that area,” Panetta told reporters on Wednesday.

Pakistan’s Foreign Office has replied by stating that it is doing all it can and there is a need for coordinated action with US against extremists across the border, including those that are attacking Pakistani check posts and villages.

“We are using all our resources to fight terrorism. As far as these issues like Haqqani network launching attacks from Pakistani territory is concerned, has any proof ever been given?” stated a senior Pakistani military official.

“But if the militants are doing something inside Afghanistan, then it is the responsibility of the Afghan and Western forces to hold them on the borders,” he added.
“They let everyone go scot-free on their side (of the border) and then they say Pakistan is not doing enough.”

Cross-border attacks on Pakistani villages and posts by Taliban based in Kunar province of Afghanistan are on the increase. Recent reports in Pakistani media, including statements from ANP leadership, have suggested that Pakistani Taliban (TTP) hiding in Afghanistan have the support of NATO and Afghan security forces.