French Agency Report Speaks of Hardcore Groups in Afghanistan

May 13, 2000

Islamabad, May 13, irna -- A report by French Intelligence Agency has hinted at presence of three networks of extremists, operating from Taliban controlled parts of Afghanistan. ''Osama bin Laden is not that much a dreaded diehard terrorist and some others are,'' the agency said in a four-page confidential report, sent to the Pakistan interior ministry. The report, according to The News, an English language daily, said that it is the media and the American CIA which has made Osama bin Laden a paper tiger. It said at least three hardcore groups had their 'sheikhdoms' in Taliban controlled territory of Afghanistan. The report criticized the U.S approach towards the issue of terrorism, particularly the Cruise missile attack on suspected Osama bases in eastern Afghanistan, in 1998. It said, ''the task of defeating terrorism is a complex one which requires patience and endurance, not pinprick missile attacks.''

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