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Last Updated: Friday, 22 August, 2003, 11:19 GMT 12:19 UK
Pakistan urges closer Afghan ties
Taleban fighters in 2001
Taleban forces are blamed for recent attacks
Pakistan has proposed sharing more intelligence with Afghanistan following increasing attacks by the Taleban.

Pakistan Foreign Minister Khurshid Kasuri put forward the idea during two days of talks in Kabul, he told journalists on Friday.

On Thursday Afghan President Hamid Karzai said there needed to be more trust between his country and Pakistan.

In further violence in the south-east of the country, a US base has come under rocket attack.

'Greater interaction'

Mr Kasuri's visit comes at a time when relations between the two countries have been under increasing strain.

Afghan leaders accuse Islamabad of not doing enough to stop the Taleban and al-Qaeda from regrouping on Pakistani soil.

And attacks against Afghan and US forces in Afghanistan have increased significantly recently.

Mr Kasuri called for more co-operation between Islamabad and Kabul.

"I suggested there's a need for much greater interaction between the intelligence agencies of the two countries so some things can be pre-empted,", he told reporters.

President Hamid Karzai
Afghan President Karzai wants more trust with Pakistan

"Because if the Afghans have prior knowledge, they can share it with the CIA. But it'll be much better if they share it with us directly," he said.

His comments came as it emerged that a US military base in the south-eastern district of Zormat was hit by rockets on Thursday, the AFP news agency reported.

A US soldier died after another attack in the region on Wednesday. The US military authorities have not said who they believe was responsible.

The past week has been one of the bloodiest in Afghanistan since the Taleban were toppled by US-led forces in 2001.

Dozens of militants and Afghan troops and police have died in a series of clashes in the south and east.

Hopefully as a result of our talks, confidence between the two government will improve further
Pakistan Foreign Minister Khurshid Kasuri

There have been repeated Afghan accusations that the violence in the south-east of the country, widely blamed on Taleban supporters, is being instigated by elements across the border in Pakistan.

Mr Kasuri denied vigorously that Pakistan had any motive to destabilise Afghanistan and he repeated that Pakistan was a firm supporter of the US war on terror.

On other matters, the Pakistani foreign minister said that Islamabad intended soon to begin upgrading the main road between Kabul and the Pakistani border at the Khyber Pass.

Islamabad has also said it intends to build a railway linking the city of Kandahar with Pakistan's rail network, to provide better access for Afghan and Central Asian goods to the port of Karachi.


SEE ALSO:
New Pakistan anti-terror force
20 Aug 03  |  South Asia
Pakistan groups 'help Taleban'
19 Aug 03  |  South Asia
'Taleban' storm Afghan security post
18 Aug 03  |  South Asia
Afghan security crisis deepens
14 Aug 03  |  South Asia
Analysis: Pakistani-Afghan tensions
09 Jul 03  |  South Asia
Arrests over Kabul embassy attack
17 Jul 03  |  South Asia


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