News / USA

    US says Haqqani Network Will be Designated as Terror Group

    Jalaluddin Haqqani (R), the leader of the Haqqani network, points to a map of Afghanistan during a visit to Pakistan while his son looks on in this October 19, 2001 photograph.
    Jalaluddin Haqqani (R), the leader of the Haqqani network, points to a map of Afghanistan during a visit to Pakistan while his son looks on in this October 19, 2001 photograph.
    VOA News
    The U.S. is declaring the Pakistan-based Haqqani network a terrorist organization, a move that paves the way for tough financial sanctions against the militant group.

    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced Friday that she had signed a report to Congress that says the network meets the criteria for a terrorist designation. The U.S. says it will also urge other countries to freeze any assets linked to the militant group.

    The Haqqani network has been blamed for a series of high-profile attacks on U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, including an attack at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul last year.

    The group, which has ties to the Taliban and al-Qaida, is reportedly based in Pakistan's North Waziristan tribal area.  It is also believed to have close ties with elements of Pakistani intelligence -- a charge Pakistani officials have rejected.

    Senior Haqqani commanders said the terror designation shows the U.S. is not sincere about peace efforts in Afghanistan.  They told Reuters news agency the move would result in "hardship" for U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl, held captive since disappearing in 2009 from his base in Paktika province.

    The Haqqani Network


    ORIGINS: Founded by Jalaluddin Haqqani, an Afghan guerilla. In the 1980's, Jalaluddin received American support in fighting against Soviet troops in Afghanistan.

    WHY TARGETED: The United States believes the al Qaida and Taliban-linked Haqqani network is responsible for a series of high-profile attacks against U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, including a 2011 attack on the U.S. embassy in Kabul that left four people dead and more than 100 wounded.

    PREVIOUS US EFFORTS: The United States has previously imposed sanctions on Haqqani leaders, including founder Jalaluddin Haqqani and two of his sons. In late August, U.S. and Pakistani officials confirmed that Badruddin Haqqani, the commander of the group's day-to-day operations, was killed in a drone strike.

    PAKISTAN: Pakistan has denied assertions that the Haqqani network has close ties to elements of Pakistani intelligence.

    The Pentagon declined Friday to discuss details of efforts to gain the soldier's return.  But spokesman George Little welcomed the announcement, saying U.S. forces will continue with "aggressive military action against this threat" to U.S. security in the region.

    The Pakistani embassy in Washington called the U.S. move to blacklist the Haqqani network a U.S. "internal matter." It said Pakistan would continue to work with all international partners, including the United States, in combating terrorism.

    However, Afghanistan analyst Lisa Curtis of the U.S.-based Heritage Foundation voiced skepticism about Pakistani efforts to pursue the network.

    “Well, I am sort of doubtful that Pakistan is going to change any of its policies overnight. Let’s take for example [the banned militant group] Lashkar-e-Taiba. They have been listed as a foreign terrorist organization by the U.S. for the last 10 years, yet Pakistan has not really taken any concrete measures to shut that group down. So I think that, you know, it would be premature to expect Pakistan to take any concrete measures on its own," Curtis said.

    Congress has been pressing to have the entire network branded a terrorist organization because it is now widely seen as the biggest threat to U.S. and allied forces in Afghanistan.  Clinton faced a September 9 U.S. Congressional deadline for making a decision concerning the entire group.

    However, some U.S. officials have expressed concern that placing the network on a blacklist could further damage already fragile relations with Pakistan and slow efforts to negotiate a political settlement to the Afghan war by undercutting talks with the Taliban.

    Months of sour relations between the U.S. and Pakistan are only just now easing with July's reopening of crucial military supply lines across the Afghan border.  Pakistan had closed the routes after 24 Pakistani troops were killed in a U.S. air strike last year.

    The U.S. has been pressing Pakistan to launch a military offensive in North Waziristan, but the Pakistani army has said its forces are stretched too thin to target militants in the tribal agency.  

    Afghan Interior Ministry spokesman Sediq Sediqqi on Friday welcomed any move by the United States to target the Haqqani network.

    You May Like

    Native Americans Ask: What About Our Water Supply?

    They say they have been facing a dangerous water contaminant for decades - uranium – but the problem has received far less attention than water contamination by lead in Flint, Michigan

    Pakistan's President Urges Nation Not to Celebrate Valentine's Day

    Mamnoon Hussain criticizes Valentine's Day, which falls on Sunday this year, as a Western import that threatens to undermine the Islamic values of Pakistan

    Mother of IS Supporter: Son Was Peaceful, 'Role Model'

    Somali-American Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of conspiring to provide material support to Islamic State militants

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: NRG1006 from: New York, NY
    September 07, 2012 8:49 PM
    I'm not sure why America is now identifying Haqqani as a terrorist network when all along they have taken responsibility for killings in India and the opposition in Pakistan. They are also responsible for the double-cross at the Khyber Pass to blame the US for their attempt to alienate Paki-US policies. Pakistan is a "drift" Country accepting bribes from all sides.

    by: Dr. Malek Towghi from: USA
    September 07, 2012 2:32 PM
    Please expedite. The Haqqani network's creator, trainer and financier, the ISI should also be declared a terrorist outfit.

    by: Godwin from: Nigeria
    September 07, 2012 1:54 PM
    Looks like round-tripping. Pakistan is at home with Haqqani network, so who's worried? Pakistan itself is wooed because it has nuke. Pakistan is angry because USA killed Osama bin Laden. Pakistan is not happy with USA branding Haqqani a terrorist group, and US is worried. This is because US already knows that Pakistan is an access of terror/evil - a terrorist state. Pakistan is only different from Iran in its insidious treachery while Iran boasts of it. It's coming a shade too late to tell Pakistan to its face, 'YOU'RE A TERRORIST STATE' for harboring and nurturing terror outfit like Haqqani that thrives on the blood of innocent people, if the shame of finding Osama bin Laden next door to the presidential lodge in Islamabad is not enough.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortagei
    X
    February 12, 2016 7:31 PM
    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortage

    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Gateway to Mecca: Historical Old Jeddah

    Local leader Sami Nawar's family has been in the Old City of Jeddah for hundreds of years and takes us on a tour of this ancient route to Mecca, also believed to be the final resting place of Adam's wife, Eve.
    Video

    Video New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Uganda

    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video Russia Bristles at NATO Expansion in E. Europe

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is meeting Friday with the head of NATO after the Western military alliance and the United States announced plans for the biggest military build-up in Europe since the Cold War. Russia has called NATO's moves a threat to stability in Europe. But NATO says the troop rotations and equipment are aimed at reassuring allies concerned about Russia as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Russia's Catholics, Orthodox Hopeful on Historic Pope-Patriarch Meeting

    Russia's Catholic minority has welcomed an historic first meeting Friday in Cuba between the Pope and the Patriarch of Russia's dominant Orthodox Church. The Orthodox Church split with Rome in 1054 and analysts say politics, both church and state, have been driving the relationship in the centuries since. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.