Senior Pentagon officials pledged Thursday to “take measures” if the US military can confirm information about Moscow paying rewards to Taliban militants for the killing of US soldiers in Afghanistan.
Responding to questions from a congressional committee about this US intelligence, Defense Secretary Mark Esber and Chief of the General Staff, General Mark Millie, said that military intelligence had not yet “confirmed” it, in their first public comments on the issue that sparked a scandal in Washington.
General Milli said that Washington had known for years that Russia supported the Afghan rebels, in particular by handing them weapons, adding, “But there is a huge difference between arming and issuing orders”.
We know weapons, we know support, but regarding Russia, we have neither concrete evidence nor information about specific instructions. This is very different”.
“We will investigate.
We will find out if this is true. If it is correct, we will take measures without specifying the nature of these measures.
For his part, Esber said that even if the reliability of this information has not yet been confirmed, the Pentagon is looking “seriously” at all information about threats to US forces.
The New York Times, and then the Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal, reported that a Russian military intelligence unit offered rewards to “Taliban-linked” militants for killing US soldiers from NATO forces in Afghanistan.
The newspapers quoted unknown sources in the American intelligence that this information was submitted to President Trump and discussed by the National Security Council at the White House at the end of March without taking any decision.
Newspapers, quoting unidentified sources in the American intelligence services, reported that the information was passed on to President Donald Trump and the National Security Council at the White House, which he discussed in late March, without making any decision about a move.
Russia and the Taliban have denied this information altogether.