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Rumsfeld : War on Terrorism Is Not Over - 2002-10-07


A year after the start of U-S air strikes in Afghanistan, the United States said Monday the war against al Qaida and the Taleban is not over.

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says the war on terrorism has not ended because there are still thousands of terrorists in dozens of countries around the world. He told a briefing in Washington, al-Qaida and Taleban elements still remain in Iran and Pakistan.

When asked if he is disappointed that Osama bin Laden's fate is still unknown, he said the whole anti-terrorism operation is not about one man.

He said some of the goals he listed last year were to oust the Taleban rulers, kill or capture al-Qaida terrorists, make Afghanistan inhospitable for terrorists to operate and bring relief to the Afghan people. These goals, he said, have been achieved to a large extent.

Secretary Rumsfeld also noted that schools in Afghanistan have been reopened, girls are back in classrooms and Afghan women are back to work.

He said the infrastructure in Afghanistan has to be rebuilt and the United States and its coalition partners are committed to do that.

He said there are 90 countries in the coalition, which he said, is the largest in human history.

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