Haqqani network behind Afghan attacks: U.S. envoy

Reuters News
Posted: Apr 19, 2012 7:16 AM
Haqqani network behind Afghan attacks: U.S. envoy

KABUL (Reuters) - The U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan said on Thursday there was "no question" that the Haqqani network, one of the most feared insurgent groups in the country, mounted coordinated attacks in Kabul and other cities over the weekend.

Ryan Crocker also called on Islamabad to crack down on what he called Haqqani safe havens in Pakistan, reiterating a long-standing demand that has strained ties between the strategic allies.

"There is no question in our mind that the Haqqanis were responsible for these attacks. We know where their leadership lives and we know where these plans are made ... in Pakistan," he told reporters.

Pakistan sees the Haqqani network as a counterweight to the growing influence of rival India in Afghanistan, analysts say. Pakistan denies that claim.

The Afghan Taliban claimed responsibility for the attacks on foreign embassies and parliament, which lasted 18 hours, killing 11 Afghan security forces and four civilians.

Thirty five insurgents died in the operation apparently designed to make big media headlines.

The Haqqani network says it is no longer based in Pakistan.

(Reporting by Amie Ferris-Rotman; Editing by Michael Georgy and Ed Lane)