The Pakistani foreign minister, Hina Rabbani Khar has dismissed as ‘old wine in even older bottles’, the NATO report leaked by media sources in Britain which has claimed her country supported the Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan.
“I don’t think these claims are new, these claims have been made for many many years. I think I can just disregard this as potentially a strategic leak or otherwise,” she told a press conference in Kabul after a meeting with the Afghanistan president.
The Taliban, its claimed in the report are set to take control of Afghanistan after NATO-led forces withdraw. Analysts believe it could be seen as a damning assessment of the war which is now in its 11th year.
Concrete links between Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence the ISI and the Taliban have been dismissed in Islamabad.
“There may be some sort of indirect contact, some sort of business relationship between certain segments of the ISI and the Pakistan military and the Taliban. But to suggest that there is a formal relationship , a formal channel of support between the ISI and the Taliban, I think it’s pretty much preposterous,” said Imtiaz Gul, Chairman of Centre for Research and Security Studies in Islamabad.
The leaked report comes at what many believe is a sensitive time. Pakistan is already blocking the supply route to coalition forces in Afghanistan, following a NATO attack in which 24 Pakistani soldiers were killed.