Lahore, May 19 (ANI): US Defence Secretary Robert Gates has said the Pakistan Army is capable of neutralising the Taliban, but is maintaining contacts with the terror outfit as they are not sure who is going to win in Afghanistan.
He said it was up to Pakistan to clear the Taliban and Al Qaeda terrorists out.
“Pakistan Army is capable of neutralising the Taliban. They can do this. They just need training and probably some different kinds of equipment,” Gates said.
“They’re maintaining contact with these groups, in my view as a strategic hedge … They are not sure who’s going to win in Afghanistan. They’re not sure what’s going to happen along that border area. So, to a certain extent, they play both sides,” he reiterated.
Asked what keeps him up at night, Gates said: “I suspect everybody would say the thing that frightens them the most is a group like al Qaeda getting hold of a weapon of mass destruction. And I think that really is a serious worry.”
“We want to try and persuade the Pakistanis of the importance of doing this… We’ll just have to keep working with the Pakistanis. These problems aren’t going to be solved overnight,” The Daily Times quoted Gates, as saying. (ANI)