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Pakistan must reform its intelligence agency

world Updated: Mar 07, 2009 15:42 IST

Pakistan’s intelligence agencies are losing their support base and increasingly being targeted by terrorists, a leading South Asian expert has said and suggested that new government of Pakistan needs to bring the intelligence set-up particularly ISI under civilian control.

“Reducing the role of the military in intelligence should be a priority not only because it will help the government consolidate itself domestically but also because the perception abroad of Pakistan’s emerging democracy and consequent foreign support will be shaped by its this capacity,” said Frederic Grare, the well known South Asian expert.

In a report published by Carnegie Endowment, Grare said that since 2008 elections, the ISI has launched a series of offensives on both the Afghan border and Kashmir, which, besides their specific geostrategic objectives, also create a credibility problem for the civilian government.

“The threat of terrorism will persist as long as the ISI continues nurturing a number of extremist groups operating within and beyond Pakistan’s borders,” the report said.

Grare in his report asked the civilian government of Pakistan to restore the Supreme Court and prosecute ISI violations of legality, while reinforcing separation between civilian and military intelligence agencies.