Pak President Zardari met CIA Director secretly: Report

Times of India
September 30, 2008

NEW YORK: Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari secretly met the director of America’s Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Michael Hayden on his recent US visit, a media report said on Monday.

Details of the meeting were not given but a regular columnist of the New York Times reported that Zardari has replaced heads of three directorates of the Pakistani intelligence agency ISI.

Zardari said Pakistan’s new government will confront the Taliban militants, to “free the country” from their hold.

“It is my decision that we will go after them (Taliban insurgents), we will free this country,” he told Roger Cohen in an interview. “Yes, this is my first priority because I will have no country otherwise. I will be president of what?”

The article said Zardari also spoke for “genuine conciliation” with India and Afghanistan, which is essential to the region’s stability.

Asked if the assassination of his wife motivated him to confront Islamic militancy, he replied in the affirmative, but said he intends to fight the Taliban insurgents because they were a “cancer” to the society.

“I will fight them because they are a cancer to my society, not because of my wife only, but because they are a cancer, yes, and they did kill the mother of my children, so their way of life is what I want to kill; I will suck the oxygen out of their system so there will be no Talibs,” he was quoted as saying.


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