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CIA failed to strike deal with two Taliban factions to target outfit's chief

Islamabad , Thu, 19 Jan 2012 ANI

Islamabad, Jan 19(ANI): The Central Intelligence Agency has reportedly failed to negotiate with two powerful Taliban factions to wipe out group chief Hakimullah Mehsud, before resuming drone strikes in Pakistan's tribal region.


The CIA had tried to persuade two Taliban groups, Wali-ur-Rehman and Naimat Mehsud to help them target Hakimullah in return of prisoners' release and monitory benefits but the deal failed because the Taliban feared that abandoning the central leadership could lead to their elimination, The Nation reports.


The TTP and the Afghan Taliban, subsequently, convened a joint Taliban council meeting that pledged allegiance to the Taliban leadership in Afghanistan and Pakistan.


North Waziristan- based political agent Yahya Akunzada said neither political administration in FATA nor any Pakistani government department was involved in reconciliatory talks with militants.


"I can't comment on behalf of the US but I can safely say that nobody from our side tried to reconcile with Taliban or facilitate any deal," he said.


Wazir tribe chieftain Malik Idrees Khan slammed the CIA "backfired manoeuvres" saying they threatened tribesmen's lives.


"They (Taliban) believe that we were instrumental in facilitating backdoor deal between their men and CIA. Our lives are at high risk. Our men are being killed," he said.


The Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) spokesperson Ehsaanullah Ehsaan has insisted that the TTP central command and its allied factions were "one united unit" and rejected reports of rifts.


He, however, refused to divulge details about Hakim's whereabouts and added that "he could be in Pakistan or in Afghanistan".(ANI)


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