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August 29, 2012

Mulla Omar, aides hiding in Pakistan: Gen Allen

Entertainment

WD
Web Desk
August 29, 2012

WASHINGTON: A top American general based in Afghanistan has said reclusive Taliban leader Mulla Omar is hiding in Pakistan along with his commanders.
“Omar lives in Pakistan, as do many of his commanders. From that safe vantage point, they’ve sent hundreds of young, impressionable, largely spiritual and helpless youths to their deaths and detention in Afghanistan. For this, they must forfeit their honour and any claim to Islamic virtue,” General John Allen, Commander of US and Nato forces in Afghanistan, wrote in an article. Allen’s article focused on the recent increase in attacks on US troops by Afghan security forces, which the Taliban have been claiming they have infiltrated. “The focus on ‘green-on-blue’ attacks obscures the callous slaughter of Afghan civilians by insurgents led by Omar. He has the blood of innocents on his hands even though he hypocritically tells his subordinates not to attack civilians,” Allen said, holding that Omar is either out of touch, or his forces are out of control.
“Perhaps that should be no surprise. ‘Green’ and ‘blue’ have been taking the fight to the red enemy, the Taliban, and the enemy is fighting back from a position of weakness,” said the top American commander, holding that the outfit has been losing ground.
“His forces have largely been ejected from most of the relevant population areas, and from among the most relevant terrain in Afghanistan. Omar is losing financial support from donors, who are sending their money elsewhere, and from reduced drug profits, thanks to Afghan and coalition efforts to stamp out the poppy harvest,” Gen Allen said.
He also appreciated Afghan security forces for their efforts in curbing Taliban’s influence.
Meanwhile, the US has warned its citizens of travelling to Pakistan in the wake of possible terror threats in the country.
Urging American nationals to avoid protests and large gatherings, the State Department, in a travel advisory,

said the presence of al-Qaeda, Taliban elements, and indigenous militant sectarian groups pose a potential danger to US citizens throughout Pakistan.
“Threat reporting indicates terrorist groups continue to seek opportunities to attack locations where US citizens and Westerners are known to congregate or visit, such as shopping areas, hotels, clubs and restaurants, places of worship, schools, and outdoor recreation events,” it said.
Travel to much of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan was also restricted as per the new advisory that replaces the one issued earlier on February 2.