The New York Times reports that Pakistan's Interior Ministry has warned that Taleban and Islamic militants are rapidly spreading beyond the nation's tribal areas.
The newspaper on Saturday quoted a 15-page document from the Interior Ministry that it reported was discussed by the nation's security council in the presence of President Pervez Musharraf.
Interior Ministry officials wrote that "swift and decisive action" is necessary to counter the growing militancy in the tribal areas. The document said the entire country could be at risk if the government fails to stop the militants.
It noted that a general policy of appeasement has emboldened the Taleban. The report further said that Pakistani security forces are outnumbered by Taleban fighters and their allies in volatile North West Frontier Province.
According to the newspaper, a Western diplomat said the document appears to be the first government report to acknowledge the seriousness of the growing threat posed by Taleban and al-Qaida insurgents.