Advertising

The Seattle Times Company

NWjobs | NWautos | NWhomes | NWsource | Free Classifieds | seattletimes.com

Politics & Government


Our network sites seattletimes.com | Advanced

Originally published May 7, 2009 at 8:51 AM | Page modified May 7, 2009 at 2:53 PM

Comments (0)     E-mail E-mail article      Print Print      Share Share

Gates: Taliban won't get Pakistani nuclear weapons

Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Thursday the Taliban went too far when fighters advanced on a district of Pakistan just outside the capital city, and said he is satisfied that the Pakistani Army is fighting back hard.

Associated Press Writer

KABUL —

Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Thursday the Taliban went too far when fighters advanced on a district of Pakistan just outside the capital city, and said he is satisfied that the Pakistani Army is fighting back hard.

Gates, visiting next-door Afghanistan where the Taliban menace has grown, said there is "very little chance" that the militant group could ever become strong enough in Pakistan to take control of that country's nuclear weapons.

"The Taliban in Pakistan overreached," Gates said of the recent advance on the Buner district near Islamabad. "I think that it has served as an alarm for the Pakistani government," he said, adding that leaders know the attempt at a truce with the Taliban in the strategic Swat Valley has failed.

The militants used the truce to expand operations next door in Buner, and government troops last week fought their way into the district just 60 miles from the capital.

Taliban militants have threatened a campaign of suicide bombings in Pakistan in retaliation for U.S. missile strikes into the northwest and for a string of military operations by Pakistani forces.

Much of Gates' visit was overshadowed by claims that the United States killed civilians during an air strike in Afghanistan on Sunday. Gates offered fresh U.S. condolences on Thursday and a promise to find out what happened. He did not accept blame, but said the U.S. needs to show regret and respect no matter who is at fault.

Gates told reporters in Kabul that he had heard the report that the Taliban may have used grenades to cause or add to civilian deaths in the incident and make the United States look bad. Gates said that account, reported Wednesday by The Associated Press and other news organizations citing unidentified sources, is under investigation.

Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company

More Politics headlines...

E-mail E-mail article      Print Print      Share Share

Comments
No comments have been posted to this article.

advertising


Get home delivery today!

More Politics

Others states' fights bring focus to Daniels

NEW - 07:13 AM
South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley is writing memoir

Bill would make jail mug shots available

Immigration, license bill voted down in state Senate

Rival Texas bills require sonograms before abortions

Advertising

Video

Marketplace

Advertising