No intelligence deal signed with Pakistan: official
Voices of concern were raised after the Afghan spy agency, the National Directorate of Security or NDS, and the Pakistani spy agency, Inter-Services Intelligence or ISI, concluded a memorandum of understanding on intelligence cooperation last week.
Najibullah Manali, media and culture advisor at the National Security Council (NSC), told Pajhwok Afghan News that President Ashraf Ghani would consult leaders of the parliament and civil society groups over the proposed agreement.
“In that meeting, the president would ask the first question from participants if they want peace with Pakistan or not,” said Manali, who added if the answer was in negative, the government would not further proceed with the agreement.
He said if political leaders endorsed the draft agreement, it would be sent to Pakistan and leaders of the premier spy agencies of Afghanistan and Pakistan would sign it into a legal document.
The official said nothing had been mentioned in the draft about separatists, the Durand Line, Afghanistan’s territorial integrity, Pakistan’s interferences in Afghanistan’s affairs, Afghan-Indo relations, Kabul’s ties with other countries or foreign intelligence agencies.
Manali said it had been said in the agreement that no separatist could use or benefit from one country’s soil against the other.
He said the main objective of the accord was to strengthen intelligence cooperation between Afghanistan and Pakistan, criticising politicians for not letting the accord normally complete the legal stages.
Reports say the spy agencies of the two countries would share intelligence against terrorists on their respective sides of the border under the MoU.
A spokesman for the NDS had said the basic aim of the MoU was to share information in technical areas and that such agreements had reached between the two agencies in the past.
A day earlier, former president Hamid Karzai urged his successor Ashraf Ghani to scrap the deal with Pakistan as it was against Afghanistan’s national interest.
Lawmakers of both houses of parliament also expressed their concerns over the accord, summoning top security officials to explain their position.
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