A top commander of Afghanistan's ousted Taleban regime says his group has more than 200 fighters ready to carry out suicide attacks against U.S. and allied forces in the country.
The Taleban commander, Mullah Dadullah, spoke in an interview with the Associated Press news agency. The interview was conducted Sunday by satellite phone from an undisclosed location.
Mullah Dadullah was quoted as saying there is no chance of a reconciliation between his fighters and the U.S.-backed government of President Hamid Karzai. He claimed Afghanistan's new parliament - the country's first in more than 30 years - is totally "obedient to America."
A spokesman for the Afghan Defense Ministry, General Mohammed Zahir Azimi, dismissed the Taleban remarks as propaganda. General Azimi says his country's security forces are strong enough to deal with isolated and weakened bands of rebels.
Suicide attacks have increased in Afghanistan in recent months, primarily in southern and eastern regions where U.S.-led coalition forces are hunting Taleban and al-Qaida fighters.Some information for this report was provided by AP.