News / Asia

Pakistan Protests 'Brief' NATO Incursions From Afghanistan

Chinook helicopters fly over the Paktia's mountains province near Khost, about 200 kilometers southeast of Kabul, Afghanistan (FILE).
Chinook helicopters fly over the Paktia's mountains province near Khost, about 200 kilometers southeast of Kabul, Afghanistan (FILE).

Multimedia

Audio

Pakistan is strongly protesting two incidents in which NATO helicopters launched air strikes into Pakistan while in pursuit of suspected Taliban militants fleeing across the border.  NATO says at least 30 militants were killed.  Afghan officials cited a higher death toll of at least 60 combatants.

The Pakistani government issued a statement late Monday strongly protesting the actions of NATO helicopter crews that reportedly followed hostile targets by air from Afghanistan into Pakistan.  The statement said the incidents infringe upon Pakistan's sovereignty and are "a clear violation and breach" of the United Nations mandate for the international coalition in Afghanistan.

ISAF spokesman U.S. Captain Ryan Donald in Afghanistan said the first cross-border strike took place Friday after insurgents attacked an Afghan border outpost in eastern Khost province.  "ISAF helicopters responded to the attack.  And acting in self-defense, they engaged the attackers and crossed briefly - very briefly crossed - into Pakistan, engaged them [and] then came back."

In a second strike Saturday, two helicopters returned to the border area and came under fire before killing several more insurgents.

Parts of Pakistan's tribal areas along the Afghan border are considered militant strongholds, where insurgents regularly launch attacks against NATO troops in Afghanistan.  The United States is known to use unmanned aircraft to carry out strikes in the area, but attacks by manned aircraft are rare.

NATO says the cross-border attacks fell within its rules of engagement because the insurgents had attacked them from across the border.  Meanwhile, Pakistan maintains that there are no agreed "hot pursuit" rules that would permit the border crossing.

Rasool Bakhash Rais is an international relations expert based in Lahore.  He said he he believes Pakistan's promise to "consider response options" to the military action is an empty threat.  He said it is not practical to expect NATO troops to abandon pursuit of insurgents as they flee into Pakistan.

"Why would the [NATO] forces on the other side of the border, knowing full well that some militants have attacked their posts and they are running toward Pakistan, would simply stop at this undemarcated border between Afghanistan and Pakistan?" asked Rais.

Rais said he believes the Pakistani government, which is facing its own problems and credibility issues at home, issued the condemnation as a way of saving face domestically.   


You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost-Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More