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Pakistan to Fence Border of Afghanistan

Musharraf said Omar has not been in Pakistan since studying there as a teenager, although he revealed that other Taliban leaders come and go.

He said a top militant commander, Mullah Dadullah, had been inside Pakistan three times but evaded capture. He called it "a combined failure" of Pakistan and anti-terror allies who shared the intelligence.

But in December, Pakistan helped foreign forces "eliminate" Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Osmani _ a top Omar lieutenant _ in southern Afghanistan, just across the border from Pakistan, Musharraf said.

"You could not have done this unless ISI cooperated," he said.

He accused Afghanistan of failing to police its own border, saying Pakistan had about 1,000 posts along the 1,510-mile frontier, while on the Afghan side there were less than 100.

He announced Pakistan had begun preparations to fence seven or eight locations _ a total of 22 miles _ along its northwest border. They would not use land mines because of concerns from the international community, Musharraf said.

However, he said plans for a second phase foresaw using both fencing and mines to secure 150 miles of the border further south in Baluchistan province.

"No one has the right to criticize unless they come up with an alternative solution," Musharraf said.

Arsallah Jamal, governor of Afghanistan's eastern Khost province, which borders Pakistan, said the decision would just divide people and not stop terrorism.

Afghan federal government officials could not be reached for comment.

The United States, meanwhile, gave eight Cobra attack helicopters to Pakistan on Friday to help it combat Taliban and al-Qaida militants in the border regions. The U.S. Embassy said another 12 Cobras were to be delivered later in a military aid package worth $50 million.


Associated Press writer Jason Straziuso in Kabul, Afghanistan, contributed to this report.

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