US finally starts to act like an ally in War against terrorism after realising Pakistan's support cannot be taken for granted

US finally starts to act like an ally in War against terrorism after realising Pakistan's support cannot be taken for granted
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*WASHINGTON:* United States has started to act like an ally of Pakistan in The war against terrorism after realising that Pakistan's support in Afghanistan war cannot be gained for granted.

The recent acts of CIA and State Department are testimony to this changing behaviour.

The US State Department has offered a $5 million reward for information on Mullah Fazlullah, the Afghanistan-based chief of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan(TTP).

The announcement came two days after Fazlullah’s son was reportedly killed along with around two dozen others in a US drone strike in Afghanistan.

The US State Department also offered rewards of $3 million each for information on Abdul Wali, the head of a Pakistani Taliban affiliate, and Mangal Bagh, the leader of an allied Pakistani militant group accused of attacking NATO convoys.

The State Department announcement came as Pakistani Foreign Secretary Tamina Janjua visited Washington for talks with US officials that were expected to focus on improving counter-terrorism cooperation and on US President Donald Trump’s strategy for ending the war in Afghanistan.

Washington and Kabul accuse Pakistan of harbouring Afghan Taliban and fighters of the allied Haqqani network, a charge that Islamabad denies. Islamabad charges that the TTP maintains sanctuaries in Afghanistan. US President Donald Trump in January suspended around $2 billion in security assistance to Pakistan, charging that it failed to crackdown on the Afghan Taliban and Haqqani network. In its statement, the State Department said it was offering the rewards for information on the three militant leaders because they pose threats to Pakistan, as well as US-led coalition troops in Afghanistan.

*TTP confirms Fazlullah’s son killed in US drone strike **—A12*

The TTP has also threatened attacks against the US homeland, it said. The group claimed responsibility for a botched May 2010 bomb attack in New York City’s Times Square.

The numerous strikes claimed by the group in Pakistan include the October 2012 attempted murder of Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai. She received the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize.

Fazlullah was appointed the TTP chief after the killing of Hakeemullah Mehsud in a US drone strike in Nov 2013.

He was the leader of the TTP chapter in Swat, from where he fled to Afghanistan after a military operation in 2009 that cleared the valley.

In 2015, the US State Department designated Fazlullah as a specially designated global terrorist, freezing all of his assets in the United States or in possession or control of US persons.

Wali is the leader of a TTP affiliate called Jamaat ul-Ahrar, or JUA, which has struck civilians, religious minorities, military personnel and law enforcement officials and killed two local employees of the US Consulate in Peshawar in March 2016, the State Department said.

On Wednesday, a suspected US drone strike on a training camp in a remote part of Afghanistan killed more than 20 militants.

OpEd