World Bulletin/News Desk
The United States' decision to designate the Haqqani network as a terrorist organisation shows it is not sincere about peace efforts in Afghanistan, senior commanders of the group said on Friday.
The move will also bring hardship for U.S. Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, who is being held by the militants, the commanders told Reuters by telephone from an undisclosed location.
The United States is designating the Pakistan-based Haqqani network, accused of high-profile attacks in Afghanistan, as a terrorist organisation, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Friday, in a move that would trigger sanctions against the group and turn up the heat on Pakistan's government.
US officials have long accused Pakistan of supporting the network, an allegation Islamabad denies.
Senior commanders from the network said the decision could endanger efforts to reach a peaceful settlement to the Afghan conflict before most NATO combat troops withdraw by the end of 2014.
"It means the United States is not sincere in their talks. They are on the one hand claiming to look for a political solution to the Afghan issue while on the other they are declaring us terrorists," said one of the commanders.
"So how can peace talks succeed in bringing peace to Afghanistan?"
The New York Times earlier reported that senior U.S. officials who argued against blacklisting the group were concerned it could jeopardise the fate of Bergdahl, who disappeared from his base in southern Afghanistan in June 2009 and is believed to be being held by the militants.
"Until now we treated him very well but this move by the United States will of course created hardships for him," another Haqqani commander told Reuters.
Displaced Pakistanis begin returning to homes in North Waziristan after nine months away
Suggests sanctions could change depending on whether North takes 'concrete action' to address kidnappings of Japan nationals.
"We have already pledged full support to Saudi Arabia in its operation against rebels and will join the coalition," the official said.
Presence of U.S. troops a key Taliban objection to talks with the likelihood of President's request for more U.S. support may erode trust
The government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa made it compulsory for all schools to hire armed guards, raise the height of boundary walls with barbed wire and install closed-circuit televison.
The ministry showed photos of long-range bombers sitting on the tarmac along with their crews. The jets returned the same day, it said.
"Police on duty near the spot caught two attackers red-handed with three machetes as they were fleeing the scene after the incident," police official Humayan Kabir told Reuters.
India is readying the evacuation of nationals from the capital of Yemen on Monday, after four nights of Saudi-led air strikes against Houthis forces.
This year, March has been the wettest month in more than a century, wrecking millions of hectares of winter crops. The crop damage has been blamed for a spate of rural suicides in recent weeks.
25 killed in Boko Haram attack on Nigeria's northern town. Buratai, a serene community south of Borno, has experienced less attack by Boko Haram in six years
According to Pakistani Defence Ministry officials, Pakistan sends 747 jumbo jets to evacuate nationals from Yemen
The AIIB has been seen as a significant setback to U.S. efforts to extend its influence in the Asia Pacific region to balance China's growing financial clout and assertiveness.
The two Czech women were kidnapped two years ago by an al-Qaeda linked group in Pakistan
The Philippines said on Thursday it would resume repair and reconstruction works in the disputed South China Sea.
Pakistan army fights off attack by dozens of fighters in Khyber Agency region, according to military agency.