ISLAMABAD - The UK High Commissioner Robert Brinkley has expressed apprehension that al-Qaedas leader Osama bin Laden and his second in command Ayman al-Zawahiri might be hiding in the tribal areas of Pakistan. Talking to media at his office on Wednesday, the British envoy said that his government believed in Pakistani authorities claim to have successfully ended the military operation in Swat. To another question regarding the joint pressure on the government by the UK and the US for launching operation in Waziristan, Robert Brinkley said it was the Pakistan government itself that had to decide about launching operation in Waziristan. To a question whether the western countries and the UK were ready to hold dialogue with Taliban, he said talks were possible with Taliban only after they lay down their arms and become a part of political process. He, however, made it clear that dialogue would not be held with those Taliban who refused to lay down arms. He disagreed with the notion that Taliban and al-Qaeda were gaining strength. He said support for al-Qaeda had declined but its leadership was still there. There is a possibility that its leadership is present in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of Pakistan, said Robert Brinkley. To another question, the UK High Commissioner said that operation in Helmand was successful and now 80,000 Afghan nationals could participate in elections. He said that credibility of forthcoming elections in Afghanistan was necessary to ensure peace and stability in the country. According to Robert Brinkley, British Foreign Secretary David Miliband, in his recent address to NATO at its headquarters on July 27 made it clear that peace and stability in Afghanistan depended on Pakistan. In his address, David Miliband stressed the need for a roadmap for the people living in FATA, said Robert Brinkley. According to High Commissioner Brinkley, David Miliband also proposed to incorporate FATA in the state of Pakistan and bring it under the governments control since so far they had remained out of the writ of the government. Robert Brinkley further said that with the help of the government and through intelligence reports, terrorism threat had reduced to a great deal in the United Kingdom. He further said that pre-emptive strikes also made it possible to thwart major terrorist activities in the United Kingdom. To another question, he said he could not give any time frame with regard to the end of the military operation in Afghanistan and start of political process there.