ISLAMABAD - Afghanistan has agreed to start a special operation against TTP in its Kunar and Nuristan provinces with coordination of Pakistan armed forces and Afghanistan as well as Isaf have assured the army chief that they will eliminate hideouts of the militants involved in terror activities in Pakistan.
This was decided in a meeting on Tuesday when Afghan Army Chief Gen Sher Muhammad Karimi and Isaf Commander Gen John Campbell held a special sitting with Army Chief Gen Raheel Sharif in GHQ Rawalpindi. The meeting is in the aftermath of COAS visit to Afghanistan where he shared ‘vital intelligence’ evidence about the Peshawar school massacre with both.
In an unusual move, Chief of General Staff Afghan National Army (ANA) General Sher Muhammad Karimi and Isaf Commander General John Campbell travelled together to the garrison city for a meeting with the army chief.
According to sources, participants focused on coordinating counter-terrorism operations between Pakistan and Afghanistan especially in Pak-Afghan border area.
According to details, both the army chiefs agreed that their commanders would begin meeting immediately to further coordinate border area security operations.
The meeting was held amid reports of a significant development against TTP sanctuaries in Afghan provinces - Kunar and Nuristan.
The crucial visit comes a week after Gen Raheel Sharif travelled to Kabul seeking decisive action against TTP including its fugitive commander Mullah Fazlullah in Afghanistan. His visit on December 17 came after a devastating attack on an army-run school in Peshawar, in which the TTP killed 149 people, mostly children.
According to a short statement released by ISPR, “The visiting dignitaries expressed their grief over the Peshawar school tragedy in which 149 innocent lives were lost including 133 children.”
Military sources said Chief of General Staff of Afghan National Army and Commander Isaf assured General Raheel Sharif their full support in the war against terrorism as well as in eliminating terrorists on Afghan soil.
According to details, General Raheel Sharif welcomed the start of operation against TTP in the areas close to Pak-Afghan border. The army chief vowed to extend full support to the visiting Afghan chief of general staff and Isaf commander in all spheres, including coordinated operations in respective areas by both sides and sharing of intelligence.
The trilateral meeting discussed the overall security situation in the region, matters relating to coordination on the Pak-Afghan border and protocols put in place to improve border control.
Gen Raheel had sought Kabul’s help to extradite TTP chief Mullah Fazlullah who is wanted in terrorism cases in Pakistan. He received assurances from the Afghan government and Isaf for action against a Kunar-based Taliban splinter group which is believed to be behind the Peshawar school attack.
The US State Department had also said that Washington would welcome increased cooperation with Pakistan in the fight against terrorism.
Appreciating recently commenced operations by Afghan forces against Tehreek-i-Taliban (TTP) in areas close to the Pak-Afghan border, Gen Raheel vowed to extend full support to General Karimi and Commander Campbell in all spheres, including intelligence sharing as well as coordinated operations by both sides.
Both General Karimi and the Isaf commander acknowledged that due to the successful and non-discriminatory Zarb-i-Azb operation of security forces, the Pakistan Army’s operational gains were appreciable and terrorist networks had been seriously degraded.