AFP: US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates on Thursday was cool to an Iranian proposal to train Afghan police, suggesting that Tehran should first stop arming the Taliban.
ABOARD A US MILITARY FLIGHT (AFP) — US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates on Thursday was cool to an Iranian proposal to train Afghan police, suggesting that Tehran should first stop arming the Taliban.
Iran's police chief on Monday said his force was ready to train its counterparts in Afghanistan but also said there were no talks with NATO on cooperating with foreign forces in the war-ravaged country.
"I think if the Iranians want to be helpful in Afghanistan the first thing they ought to do is stop sending weapons to the Taliban, that'd be a good start," Gates told reporters aboard an airplane travelling to Newport Beach, in the eastern US state of Rhode Island.
"It's a very small level but they're still doing it," Gates said.
Iran and NATO held their first "informal" talks since the Iranian revolution 30 years ago in March, focusing on Afghanistan where NATO is battling an intense Taliban-led insurgency.
Iran is interested in possible cooperation on Afghanistan to confront the problems posed by opium production there, and because of an influx of Afghan refugees across their common border.