NATO chief asks Pakistan to eliminate alleged Taliban hideouts


BRUSSELS: NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has called upon Pakistan to eliminate militant hideouts allegedly from its soil. Speaking at a press conference at NATO headquarters in Brussels Tuesday, Stoltenberg said, “Earlier, we had discussed issue of militant attacks in Afghanistan with Pakistan and now we demand Islamabad to wipe out Taliban hideouts from its territory.”

He went on to say NATO commander in Afghanistan had discussed the situation with his Pakistani counterpart.

The NATO chief also urged the regional countries to support Afghan national unity government in order to restore peace in the war-torn country.

NATO allies are set to agree on Thursday to increase by some 3,000 personnel the troop levels for the alliance’s Afghanistan training mission, Jens Stoltenberg said.

About half the additional troops will come from the United States and the other half from non-U.S. NATO allies and partner countries, Stoltenberg said.

“We have decided to increase the number of troops … to help the Afghans break the stalemate,” Stoltenberg told a news conference on Tuesday before a meeting of the alliance’s defence ministers later this week.

Stoltenberg stressed the soldiers would not have combat roles but would be part of NATO’s train, advise and assist mission called Resolute Support.