Taliban Envoy Says Pakistan Fighters not Needed yet
The Taliban's ambassador to Pakistan said Monday the militia had enough fighters and did not yet need the thousands of Pakistanis massed at the border ready for holy war.
"If they go there will be a lot of congestion and the probability of mass casualties will be higher. If they are needed then we will tell them," the ambassador, Abdul Salam Zaeef, told a press conference.
"With the air strikes in Afghanistan it is very dangerous for them to be in Afghanistan so we have not requested their presence at this stage," he added.
Several thousand heavily armed Pakistani tribesmen gathered at the border in North West Frontier Province at the weekend saying they would join the Taliban to fight a jihad or holy war against the United States.
Thousands of Pakistanis are already believed to be fighting alongside Arab volunteers and Afghans in the Taliban's frontlines.
Most are followers of Pakistani fundamentalist parties which control mosques and seminaries and have close links to the ruling Islamic militia in Afghanistan.
The ambassador said the number of foreign mujahedeen (fighters) at the frontlines already exceeded the number needed.
"We are receiving volunteer mujahedeen from among the Afghan people every day and we have to turn down their request because the ground battles have not started so far," he said in a statement read at the start of the press conference -- ISLAMABAD (AFP)
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