According to The Nation (the Pakistani version, which is pro-military), the Pakistani military is considering cutting off its support for US Predator airstrikes in the tribal areas:
In a major policy shift, Pakistan is likely to say ‘NO’ to the US over its CIA-operated drone strikes in North Waziristan Agency, thus bringing an end to the policy of former military ruler General (Retd) Pervez Musharraf.
Well-placed sources told The Nation on Wednesday that Islamabad has decided in principle to convey Washington that it does not desire unabated drone strikes, and would rather like to tackle terrorism related challenges on its own.
When approached, the US Embassy spokesman expressed his ignorance about these developments. However, the government and military sources were of the firm opinion that the US drone strikes had aggravated the problem.
“The US might have achieved tactical gains through the drone strikes, but they too had caused enormous damage to Pakistan’s efforts towards fighting the terrorism”, military chief spokesperson Major General Ather Abbas told The Nation on Wednesday.
He was of the view that the Pakistan Army does not support US drone strikes, and has always sought to secure the US drone technology to effectively tackle the challenge without any collateral damage. However, these efforts, he said, had not borne fruits so far.
One wonders if the Pakistani military has truly soured on the Predator strikes, or if this is merely pushback against US efforts to expand the Predator campaign into Baluchistan as well as US pressure on the Pakistani Army to take action in North Waziristan.
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