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Taliban not gaining ground in Afghanistan: Pentagon

Taliban not gaining ground in Afghanistan: Pentagon

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Jan 30, 2018 - 10:23

WASHINGTON (Pajhwok): The Pentagon on Monday rejected the impression that the latest wave of attacks in Kabulinfo-icon reflected the Talibaninfo-icon had gained ground in Afghanistaninfo-icon.

“Absolutely not,” Pentagon spokesman Army Col Rob Manning told reporters, when asked during an off-camera news conference if the attacks showed the Taliban had gained ground in the country.

“They (the Taliban) are murderous. They proved this weekend and this morning that their actions against innocent civilians are both unwarranted and frankly disgusting,” he remarked.

“We're going to continue to work with our allies and partners in the region as we take that regional approach to the South Asia strategy to prevent the Taliban from those types of activities again,” he said.

Asked if the Pentagon believed the uptick in the Taliban attack was related to its decision to withhold $900 million in coalition support fund assistance to Pakistaninfo-icon, Manning replied he could not draw that parallel.

“We hope that Pakistan will continue to work with us on all matters regarding the South Asia strategy specifically terrorism going forward,” he said.

His thoughts and prayers are with the victims of Saturday’s attacks, he said the enemies of Afghanistan killed indiscriminately unarmed civilians and soldiers, who equally bore the brunt of the insurgents’ cruelty.

“The perpetrator of these murders, the Taliban, cared nothing for the Afghan people. The legitimate government of Afghanistan and the Afghan forces worked tirelessly to defend all Afghans and respond to these attacks with bravery and professionalism. We stand with them,” Manning added.

US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said “The Taliban is receding after the US came out and said we’re not going to talk about a timeline.”

She told ABC News in an interview the South Asia policy announced by President Donald Trump last August was working. “We’re staying to make sure we find peace in Afghanistan. It no longer harbors terrorism and the Taliban is receding. Things are moving in the right direction.”

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