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US lawmakers for designating Haqqani network as terror outfit

Washington: Dubbing al-Qaeda linked Haqqani network as a grave danger to Afghanistan and US led coalition troops, US lawmakers have joined hands to introduce a bill in the Congress to designate the group as a terror outfit.

A bill in this regard was introduced in the House of Representatives by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers; Buck McKeon, Chairman of House Armed Services Committee and Chairman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of the Foreign Affairs Committee.

Introducing the bill Rogers said, Republicans and Democrats in both houses of Congress agree that the Haqqani Network was a violent organisation and a grave threat to the US security.

"The Haqqanis are responsible for killing hundreds of our troops, and their indiscriminate attacks have also murdered countless innocent Afghan men, women, and children. With this bipartisan, bicameral effort, we urge the Obama Administration to formally designate the Haqqani Network as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation", he said.

The designation of Haqqani network as Foreign Terrorist Organisation will make it unlawful to provide material support or resources to it.

The group of lawmakers in a statement held the Haqqani Network responsible for a long reign of terror, indiscriminate attacks, killing of US and coalition soldiers, Afghan police, and innocent Afghan men, women, and children. It said the Pakistan based network was responsible for June 2011 attack when eight Haqqani gunmen and suicide bombers carried out an assault on the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul leaving 18 people dead.

The lawmakers also blamed the group for a truck bomb attack on a US military base in Wardak province which injured 77 US troops and killed five Afghans. The statement also said that the network was behind the September 2011 assault on the US Embassy in Kabul. The 20-hour gun battle left 16 Afghans, at least six of them children, and five police officers dead.

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