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US cannot make Islamabad a 'scapegoat' for its Afghanistan failure, says Pakistan foreign office

Islamabad: Pakistan on Thursday refuted as "baseless" the remarks of a top US general who said the country's intelligence agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) has connections with terrorist groups, media reports said.

File image of Nafees Xakaria. Twitter/@ForeignOfficePk

File image of Nafees Xakaria. Twitter/@ForeignOfficePk

"The US government and army cannot make Pakistan a scapegoat for its failures in Afghanistan," foreign office spokesperson Nafees Zakaria said, the Dawn newspaper reported.

"It is clear to me that the ISI has connections with terrorist groups," Chairman of the joint chiefs of staff General Joseph Dunford had told the US Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday.

Zakaria said Pakistan has cleared its areas and begun a decisive offensive against terrorists on its soil.

Calling General Dunford's statement "baseless", he said Pakistan has acted against terrorists indiscriminately.

The top American general on Tuesday was joined by his Defence Secretary Jim Mattis in slamming the ISI.

"We have seen havens left to the terrorists' own devices. We have seen the government of Pakistan come down on terrorism, while ISI appears to run its own foreign policy," Mattis had said, acknowledging for the first time in public domain that ISI runs its own policy and does not seem to be controlled by the federal government.

"The US is trying to blame Pakistan for its failures in Afghanistan," Zakaria said, according to the report.

Published Date: Oct 05, 2017 20:54 PM | Updated Date: Oct 05, 2017 20:56 PM

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