Pakistan confirms intelligence sharing pact with Afghanistan

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Published: May 21, 2015 6:56:36 PM

Pakistan Foreign Office spokesman Qazi M.Khalilullah has confirmed that there is an agreement between Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Afghanistan's National Directorate of Security (NDS)...

Pakistan Foreign Office spokesman Qazi M.Khalilullah has confirmed that there is an agreement between Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security (NDS), which he said is aimed at bolstering the two nations fight against terrorism.

He said, according to the Dawn, that the accord between the two agencies was part of a bilateral agreement in the field of security and counter-terrorism.

According to NBC News, the two intelligence networks would in the future cooperate on “int[elligence] sharing, complimentary and coordinated int[elligence] op[erations]s,” ISPR spokesperson Maj. Gen. Asim Bajwa had announced via twitter on Monday.

National Directorate of Security (NDS) spokesperson Hassib Sediqi also confirmed the news, but rejected reports that the ISI would train and equip Afghan spies.

Kabul and Islamabad have long blamed each other’s spy agencies for supporting insurgent groups, including different factions of the Taliban, who use one country as a safe haven to launch attacks against the other.

Relations between the two countries worsened after U.S.-backed forces toppled the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2001.

NATO and Afghan officials often accused Pakistan of backing and sheltering Afghanistan’s militants, a charge that Pakistan leveled against Kabul as it attacked its own insurgencies.

The tense relationship between the two has improved somewhat since Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani was elected in September 2014.

Pakistan’s intelligence chief, chief of army staff and prime minister visited Kabul last week, while Afghanistan’s military chief went to Islamabad in April.

In the past few months, military cooperation between the two countries increased, as Afghan military cadets were enrolled by Kabul in Pakistan’s military academy and commanders on both sides of the porous 1,398-mile border set up hotlines to better communicate with each other as they fight insurgents. (ANI with inputs)

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