America dumps Pakistan over Kabul



WASHINGTON: The US has ditched Pakistan at the first opportunity, permitting the Northern Alliance to take over Kabul despite a public commitment to Islamabad not allow it.

Alliance leaders in New York are saying their forces entered Kabul "at US behest," though President Bush had initially advised them to keep the Afghan capital "an open city." Bush, too, has declared that he is "pleased" with the developments in Afghanistan, although administration officials have warned the Alliance against reprisals and human rights violations.

During their meeting in New York over the weekend, the US President had promised Pakistan's military leader Pervez Musharraf that he would not allow the Northern Alliance to enter Kabul.

"We had indications from America to enter Kabul," the Afghanistan's recognised ambassador to the UN, Dr Ravan Farhadi, who is backed by the Alliance, was quoted as telling reporters in New York, "They (America) told us to do that," he said.

US officials in Washington said that the administration had merely advised the Alliance not to enter Kabul and obviously had no control over the ground situation.

Pakistan is now trying to retrieve the situation diplomatically by pressing for the urgent induction of multinational forces. It has also "offered" its own troops for this force. But the move has been rejected straightaway by the Northern Alliance, which will brook not brook any interference from Islamabad in Afghanistan's affairs after Pakistan backed the Taliban against it.