This Article is From Sep 15, 2011

Kabul attack: US blames ISI, Haqqani

Kabul attack: US blames ISI, Haqqani
Kabul: The US has blamed a guerrilla faction with ties to Pakistan's military intelligence agency ISI for the attack on the US embassy in Kabul.

The US has blamed Pakistan-based Haqqani group for the recent attack on the American embassy in Kabul. Haqqani group is known to be backed by Pakistan's military intelligence agency ISI.

"The information available to us is that these attackers... are part of the Haqqani network, they enjoy safe haven in northern Waziristan (in Pakistan)," America's ambassador to Afghanistan, Ryan Crocker, has said.

Earlier in April, Admiral Mike Mullen, the chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, had said he was troubled by continued relations between the Haqqani group and Pakistan's ISI.

The attack launched on Tuesday lasted for 19 hours and left 14 people dead in a barrage of gunfire and suicide blasts targeting the US embassy and the neighbouring headquarters of NATO-led troops in Afghanistan.

Crocker said at least six rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) landed in the embassy compound. Officials had earlier said that injuries there were limited to three Afghan visa applicants and one Afghan security guard.

"This really is not a very big deal, a hard day for the embassy and my staff who behaved with enormous courage and dedication," he said in a media interview.

"Half a dozen RPG rounds from 800 metres away - that isn't Tet (a key offensive in the Vietnam war), that's harassment."

Crocker also said he thought the nature of the attack showed a lack of strength among insurgents and paid tribute to the response of the Afghan security forces.

"If that's the best they can do, you know, I think it's actually a statement of their weakness and more importantly, since Kabul is in the hands of Afghan security, it's a real credit to the Afghan National Security Forces," he said.

On Tuesday, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton insisted that the "brave" Americans working at the embassy in Afghanistan would not be deterred by the attack.