News / Asia

Panetta: Drone Campaign Will Continue in Pakistan

An undated handout image courtesy of the U.S. Air Force shows a unmanned MQ-1 Predator drone.An undated handout image courtesy of the U.S. Air Force shows a unmanned MQ-1 Predator drone.
x
An undated handout image courtesy of the U.S. Air Force shows a unmanned MQ-1 Predator drone.
An undated handout image courtesy of the U.S. Air Force shows a unmanned MQ-1 Predator drone.
VOA News
U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Wednesday the United States had no plans to curtail drone attacks on Pakistani soil, adding to target terrorist leaders "is also about our sovereignty."

Panetta issued the defense of the strikes during a visit to New Delhi.  He said Washington has always made it very clear that it will defend itself, and that the strikes also benefit the Pakistani people, since they were also targets of the insurgents.

His comments came one day after the White House confirmed the killing of al-Qaida's second-in-command, Abu Yahya al-Libi, apparently in a drone strike in Pakistan's North Waziristan tribal region.  The White House characterized the strike as a major blow against al-Qaida.

Pakistan's foreign ministry has said "the strategic disadvantages of such attacks far outweigh their tactical advantages, and are therefore, totally counterproductive."

Pakistan receives billions of dollars in aid from the United States.  And until relations plummeted after Pakistan shut down NATO supply routes to Afghanistan to protest a U.S. airstrike that mistakenly killed 24 Pakistani troops last November, it also enjoyed military-to-military cooperation.

Panetta's visit to India is aimed at deepening defense cooperation with Pakistan's nuclear-armed rival.  Moreover, NATO recently secured alternative routes into Afghanistan through Central Asia, and Washington, ignoring Islamabad's protests, has continued airstrikes targeting militants hiding out in Pakistan's tribal belt.

Pakistan's Foreign Ministry spokesman Moazzam Ali Khan played down the differences between Islamabad and Washington.  He insisted that while there may be ups-and-downs in the relationship, both sides want to resolve their differences in ways that are mutually acceptable.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.

You May Like

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. More

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

Dropout rate at an all-time high in South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during 3-year civil war More

Tennessee Songbirds Fly Coop Long Before Tornadoes Arrive

Researchers say birds apparently alerted to danger by sounds at frequencies below range of human hearing More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid