Taliban-linked Cleric Says He Met Afghan Leader

Published February 18, 2012 9:36AM (EST)

ISLAMABAD (AP) — A Pakistani cleric with ties to Afghanistan's Taliban says he has met with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who asked for his help in getting the insurgents to the negotiating table.

Maulana Samiul Haq said he told Karzai Saturday in Pakistan that he would help so long as it was clear what was wanted from the Taliban.

Haq runs a large seminary where many of the insurgent leaders once studied and reportedly still provides recruits for the Taliban fighting in Afghanistan.

Karzai's meeting suggests he is pressing ahead with moves to contact the Taliban inside Pakistan.

On Friday, he asked Pakistan's civilian and military leaders for help, but the meeting did not apparently make much progress.

By Salon Staff

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