ISLAMABAD: Adviser to Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said on Sunday that initial investigation into the attack on a PAF camp near Peshawar had proved terrorists’ contacts within Afghanistan.
“There are evidences that terrorists had telephonic contacts within Afghanistan. Since Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan leadership is in Afghanistan, the possibility of terrorists’ contacts within Afghanistan cannot be ruled out,” he said while speaking to a private TV channel.
“It is not the first incident that terrorists had links within Afghanistan. The December 16 attack on Army Public School was also planned in Afghanistan and its information was passed to Afghan authorities,” he recalled.
Mr Aziz said when Pakistan’s army chief went to Kabul, the Afghan government’s response was positive, an action was taken and many outlaws were apprehended.
“Now again, there is evidence that terrorists had received phone calls from Afghanistan. Further investigation is under way and will be shared with Afghan authorities on completion,” he said.
Mr Aziz said when Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had visited Afghanistan, it was recorded in the joint statement that both countries would not allow anybody to use their land against each other.
Answering a question regarding the Afghan government’s allegation that non-state actors within Pakistan were involved in the Aug 8 attack in Afghanistan, Mr Aziz said, “We have explained our position and sought proofs from Afghan authorities, if any”.
“But, by now, it is just an allegation as no evidence has been passed to Pakistan about involvement of any groups in the August 8 incident,” he added.
The adviser stressed bilateral cooperation and intelligence sharing between the two countries to proceed further for fulfilling the commitment of the May 12 joint statement and confidence-building measures.
He reiterated Pakistan’s firm resolve to combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and mentioned the elimination of deep-rooted network of extremists from North Waziristan Agency.
Published in Dawn, September 21st, 2015