Top United States military commander to arrive in Pakistan to discuss war on terror

Top U.S. military commander Gen. John Abizaid was expected to visit Pakistan later Tuesday to discuss a range of issues, including increasing tensions between Islamabad and Kabul over fugitive militants, the foreign ministry said.

Pakistan and Afghanistan are chief allies of the United States in its war on terror. But relations between the neighbors have been strained since Afghan President Hamid Karzai gave a list to Pakistan of Taliban and al-Qaida fugitives allegedly hiding in the country.

Karzai's list of 40 suspects also contained information on the possible whereabouts of Taliban chief Mullah Mohammed Omar, Afghan militia leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar and other terror suspects wanted by Washington and Kabul, according to a senior Pakistan intelligence official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to speak to the media.

Islamabad dismissed Kabul's information as outdated and unreliable.

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Tasnim Aslam said Abizaid, chief of the U.S. Central Command, will meet with his Pakistani counterpart and other officials.

"Definitely, we will present our view about Afghanistan's list when our officials will meet with Gen. Abizaid," she said.

She gave no other details, but another government official said Abizaid would call on President Gen. Pervez Musharraf, to whom Karzai had given the controversial list during his Feb. 15-17 visit, reports the AP.


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