Pakistan was actively collaborating with the Taliban in Afghanistan while accepting US aid, leaked US military reports showed, a disclosure likely to increase pressure on Washington’s embattled ally.
Under the heading “Afghan War Diary”, the revelations released by online organisation WikiLeaks emerged as Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned of greater NATO casualties in Afghanistan.
The documents were provided first to The New York Times, Britain’s The Guardian newspaper and German weekly Der Spiegel.
Contained in more than 90,000 classified documents, the disclosures could fuel growing doubts in Congress about US President Barack Obama’s war strategy at a time when the US death toll is soaring.
Civilian killings: The leaked US military records posted online on Sunday include unreported incidents of Afghan civilian killings and efforts on some occasions to cover them up, as well as covert operations against Taliban figures. The founder of WikiLeaks, a whistle-blowing website, said on Monday that the documents contained evidence of possible war crimes that should be urgently investigated.
ISI: The leaked reports, covering a period from January 2004 to December 2009, suggest that current and former officials from the Inter-Services Intelligence have met directly with the Taliban in secret strategy sessions to organise terrorist networks fighting US soldiers.
The Guardian said more than 180 intelligence files accuse the ISI of supplying, arming and training the insurgency since at least 2004. One of the reports even implicates the ISI in a plot to assassinate Afghan President Hamid Karzai, attacks on NATO warplanes, a plot to poison the beer supply of Western troops and the 2008 Indian embassy bombing, said the newspaper.
Iran: They also carry allegations that Iran is providing money and arms to Taliban and detail how widespread corruption is hampering a war now in its ninth year.
WikiLeaks said the leaked documents “do not generally cover top-secret operations”. The site also reported that it had “delayed the release of some 15,000 reports” as part of what it called “a harm minimisation process demanded by our source”, but said it may release the other documents after further review. agencies
Meanwhile, Pakistan on Monday rejected what it called “unsubstantiated information” posted by WikiLeaks website alleging that Pakistani intelligence services were backing Afghan militants and termed them “baseless”.
Foreign Office spokesman Abdul Basit said the reports were not based on facts. He said Pakistan’s role in the settlement of Afghan issue and its efforts for peace and stability there could not be denied. Pakistani envoy Hussain Haqqani said the documents “do not reflect the current on-ground realities”.
The US, Afghanistan and Pakistan are “jointly endeavouring to defeat al Qaeda and its Taliban allies militarily and politically”, he said.
Original report: Afghan War Diary, 2004-2010