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WASHINGTON — Pakistan's former leader Pervez Musharraf warned Wednesday that his country's spies will need to take "counter-measures" in Afghanistan if US troops leave it unstable or it becomes too close to India.
On a visit to Washington, Musharraf described relations between the United States and Pakistan as "terrible" but defended the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency that American officials have accused of supporting extremists.
Musharraf, who has lived in exile since stepping down in 2008 but hopes to launch a political comeback next year, insisted that his country's historic rival India was working to turn Afghanistan against Pakistan.
"Since our independence, Afghanistan always has been anti-Pakistan because the Soviet Union and India have very good relations in Afghanistan," Musharraf said at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
(Reuters) - Pakistan's security service provides weapons and training to Taliban insurgents fighting U.S. and British troops in Afghanistan, despite official denials, Taliban commanders say, in allegations that could worsen tensions between Pakistan and the United States.
A number of middle-ranking Taliban commanders revealed the extent of Pakistani support in interviews for a BBC Two documentary series, "Secret Pakistan," the first part of which was being broadcast on Wednesday.
The explosions provoked senior government officials in Xinjiang to publicly claim for the first time in recent years that the attackers had been trained in explosives in ETIM/TIP camps run by Chinese separatists in the Waziristan tribal regions of Pakistan.
The Chinese charge was made on the basis of a confession by a Uyghur militant arrested by the Chinese authorities. Pakistan swiftly extended all possible cooperation to Beijing against the ETIM/TIP network. "Terrorists, extremists and separatists in Xinjiang province constitute an evil force," said an August 1 statement issued by the Pakistani Foreign Ministry after Chinese President Hu Jintao rang Zardari to express his grave concern over the growing activities of "terrorists" belonging to the Pakistan-based ETIM/TIP network.
The United States and Afghanistan are secretly discussing the conclusion of a new agreement to retain the US military presence on Afghan territory after the year 2014, writes the British daily The Guardian in a report.
According to the periodical, the talks have been on for more than a month now.
Earlier Washington made repeated public pledges that it would pull its troops out of Afghanistan by 2014. India, China and Russia are opposed to foreign interference in the region and opt for observing the sovereignty of all nations.
"The NATO Training Mission in Afghanistan (NTM-A) was only started in the late 2009 and as a consequence with mission going on to 2014, we are not even half way through on mandate on our task, and with the announcement of NATO of course we'll stay here past 2014," Major General Michael Day, Deputy Commander of NTM-A told a joint press conference with the spokesman of ISAF Brigadier General Carsten Jacobson.
"God forbid, if a war erupts between Pakistan and the United States, we (Afghanistan) will stand by Pakistan," Karzai told Pakistan's Geo television network in an interview broadcast on Saturday, Reuters reported.
Karzai also said that if Pakistan is ever attacked by another country and needs help, "Afghanistan will be there with you. Afghanistan is a brother."
The Afghan president stated, "Afghanistan will never forget the welcome, the hospitality, the respect, and the brotherhood showed by the Pakistani people towards the Afghan people.”