CIA: Links between the ISI and Taliban intensified; Gilani in US; Violent incidents across country; Indo-Pak peace process to continue
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  • The New York Times, citing a report by the Deputy Director of the CIA, Stephen R. Cappes, who had visited Pakistan in mid-July, noted that links between the ISI and militants operating in the tribal areas of Pakistan had intensified1. US officials also concluded that ISI was involved with the resurgent Taliban groups in Afghanistan which had led to a rise in violence on the Pak-Afghan border2. The decision to place ISI under the Interior Ministry was meanwhile revoked3.

    Earlier in the week, Prime Minister Gilani on visit to the US met President Bush at the White House on July 28. Reports noted that the US President reiterated that the US respected Pakistan’s sovereignty. Pakistan Information Minster, Sherry Rehman stated that the issue of US missile attacks in the tribal areas of Pakistan was not discussed during the meeting between Gilani and Bush. However, concerns relating to the missile attacks were reportedly communicated to the US establishment4.

    Meanwhile, the spate of violent incidents across the country continued. At least six people were killed in a missile attack in South Waziristan on July 285. Two security persons were killed and at least 30 kidnapped in Mingora on July 29 and five soldiers were killed along with 25 militants in Swat on July 306.

    In other developments, Mr. Gilani and Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh met during the SAARC summit in Colombo during the week. Both the leaders vowed to continue the Indo-Pak peace process. The Pakistan Prime Minister reportedly assured investigations into the alleged involvement of Pakistani agencies in the Kabul bombings7.