KABUL (PAN): During an unannounced visit to Kabul, US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta warned on Thursday that Washington's patience with Islamabad on rebel sanctuaries was fraying.
As long as terrorist hideouts existed in Pakistan, peace and stability would continue to elude Afghanistan, he told a news conference after high-level security talks with his Afghan counterpart.
Flanked by Defence Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak, the visiting secretary alleged the Haqqani network -- blamed for a string of deadly attacks on Afghan and foreign troops -- had safe havens in the North Waziristan tribal region.
Asking Islamabad to initiate concrete action against the Al Qaeda-linked group, Panetta said: “It’s an increasing concern that Haqqani safe havens still exist across the border...We are reaching the limits of our patience here.”
The Obama administration would mount diplomatic pressure on Pakistan on the issue of terrorist sanctuaries, he said, urging the ally in the war on terror to adopt effective measures to ensure security for Afghanistan and the foreign troops stationed there.
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