KABUL: Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said Thursday that the United States was running out of patience with Pakistan over safe havens of insurgents who attack US troops across the border in Afghanistan.
Panetta spoke after talks with Afghan Defence Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak on the latest leg of an Asian tour that has taken him to Pakistan's arch-rival India, but not Islamabad in a sign of how dire US-Pakistan relations are.
He singled out the Haqqani network, a Taliban and Al-Qaeda-linked faction believed to be based in Pakistan's tribal district of North Waziristan.
"It's an increasing concern that Haqqani safe havens still exist on the other side of the border," he said. "We are reaching the limits of our patience here," he added.
Panetta said that in talks with Pakistan, the United States had made "very clear, time and time again," the need to crack down on Haqqani militants.
Pakistan has resisted US pressure to launch a major offensive against the network in North Waziristan, arguing that it is too overstretched in the fight against local Taliban to take on an enemy that poses no threat to Pakistan. AGENCIES