News / Asia

Pakistan to Reexamine Relations with US After Deadly NATO Raid

Pakistani protesters shout slogans against America and NATO in Lahore, Pakistan, November 26, 2011.
Pakistani protesters shout slogans against America and NATO in Lahore, Pakistan, November 26, 2011.

Pakistan says it is reviewing its relations with the United States and NATO in the aftermath of a predawn cross-border airstrike Saturday on two military outposts in the country's northwest which killed at least 26 Pakistani soldiers and wounded 14 others.

Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and top military and government leaders discussed the situation at an emergency meeting late Saturday.

In a formal statement, they said the Pakistani government "will revisit and undertake a complete review of all programs, activities and cooperative arrangements with US/NATO/ISAF, including diplomatic, political, military and intelligence."  They called for "strong and urgent action against those responsible for this aggression."

Mr. Gilani said the killings were "an attack on Pakistan's sovereignty," and his army chief of staff, General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, condemned the attack as "blatant and unacceptable act."

Pakistan shut down all NATO supply lines through its territory to Afghanistan and ordered the United States to vacate an airbase in southwestern Baluchistan province within 15 days.  The CIA reportedly uses the Shamsi airbase for covert drone strikes in Pakistan's tribal belt, but the Pakistani military said in June that the United States does not operate out of that base.

The United States says Pakistan's tribal belt is a sanctuary for the Taliban, which has been fighting for 10 years against U.S. troops in Afghanistan.  However, official Washington scrambled Saturday to stress how seriously U.S. officials are taking this incident.

The White House said senior U.S. civilian and military officials contacted their Pakistani counterparts "to express our condolences, our desire to work together to determine what took place, and our commitment to the U.S.-Pakistan partnership ... [of] shared interests, including fighting terrorism."

Pentagon chief Leon Panetta and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton issued an unusual joint statement expressing their "deepest condolences" for the incident in Pakistan's border region.  They stressed they would would press for an immediate investigation by NATO.

U.S. officials have not given a detailed account of the raid on the Pakistani outposts, nor have they confirmed that Pakistan shut down supply lines to Afghanistan.

NATO said the commander of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, General John Allen, is personally paying the "highest attention" to the investigation of what happened.

NATO spokesman General Carsten Jacobson said Afghan and coalition forces were operating in the border area of eastern Afghanistan when "a tactical situation" prompted them to call in close air support.  He said it was "likely" that coalition airstrikes caused Pakistani casualties.

In Islamabad, U.S. Ambassador Cameron Munter was summoned to the Foreign Ministry to explain the incident.  Munter said he promised the U.S. would work closely with Pakistan in any investigation.

Ties between Washington and Islamabad have been unraveling since a covert U.S. commando raid on May 2 killed al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, who was hiding for years in the Pakistani garrison town of Abbotabad.  Pakistan was outraged it was not informed beforehand and angered by what it saw as a U.S. violation of its sovereignty.

In Washington, the joint Panetta-Clinton statement said the secretary of state, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, and ISAF commander General Allen "each called their Pakistani counterparts...These U.S. diplomatic and military leaders each stressed, in addition to their sympathies and a commitment to review the circumstances of the incident, the importance of the U.S.-Pakistani partnership, which serves the mutual interests of our people."

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

You May Like

Beloved Lion Killing Sparks Virtual, Real Life Outrage

Twitter, as usual, was epicenter for anger directed at Palmer, with some questioning his manhood, calling for him to be released into the wild More

Video Booming London Property Market a Haven for Dirty Money

Billions of dollars from proceeds of crime, especially from Russia, being laundered through London property market, according to anti-corruption activists More

Video Scouts' Decision on Gays Meets Acceptance in Founder's Hometown

One former Scout leader thinks organization will move past political, social debate, get back to its primary focus of turning boys into good citizens 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.
Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’i
X
July 29, 2015 9:34 PM
Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video 'Metal Muscles' Flex a New Bionic Hand

Artificial limbs, including the most complex of them – the human hand – are getting more life-like and useful due to constant advances in tiny hydraulic, pneumatic and electric motors called actuators. But now, as VOA’s George Putic reports, scientists in Germany say the future of the prosthetic hand may lie not in motors but in wires that can ‘remember’ their shape.
Video

Video Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponents

A British pro-democracy group has accused Russia of abusing the global law enforcement agency Interpol by requesting the arrest and extradition of political opponents. A new report by the group notes such requests can mean the accused are unable to travel and are often unable to open bank accounts. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video 'Positive Atmosphere' Points Toward TPP Trade Deal in Hawaii

Talks on a major new trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations are said to be nearing completion in Hawaii. Some trade experts say the "positive atmosphere" at the discussions could mean a deal is within reach, but there is still hard bargaining to be done over many issues and products, including U.S. drugs and Japanese rice. VOA's Jim Randle reports.
Video

Video Genome Initiative Urgently Moves to Freeze DNA Before Species Go Extinct

Earth is in the midst of its sixth mass extinction. The last such event was caused by an asteroid 66 million years ago. It killed off the dinosaurs and practically everything else. So scientists are in a race against time to classify the estimated 11 million species alive today. So far only 2 million are described by science, and researchers are worried many will disappear before they even have a name. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Scientists: One-Dose Malaria Cure is Possible

Scientists have long been trying to develop an effective protection and cure for malaria - one of the deadliest diseases that affects people in tropical areas, especially children. As the World Health Organization announces plans to begin clinical trials of a promising new vaccine, scientists in South Africa report that they too are at an important threshold. George Putic reports, they are testing a compound that could be a single-dose cure for malaria.
Video

Video 'New York' Magazine Features 35 Cosby Accusers

The latest issue of 'New York' magazine features 35 women who say they were drugged and raped by film and television celebrity Bill Cosby. The women are aged from 44 to 80 and come from different walks of life and races. The magazine interviewed each of them separately, but Zlatica Hoke reports their stories are similar.
Video

Video US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Win

The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video Washington DC Underground Streetcar Station to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C.’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.
Video

Video Racially Diverse Spider-Man Takes Center Stage

Whether it’s in a comic book or on the big screen, fans have always known the man behind the Spider-Man mask as Peter Parker. But that is changing, at least in the comic book world. Marvel Comics announced that a character called Miles Morales will replace Peter Parker as Spider-Man in a new comic book series. He is half Latino, half African American, and he is quite popular among comic book fans. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Historic Symbol Is Theme of Vibrant New Show

A new exhibit in Washington is paying tribute to the American flag with a wide and eclectic selection of artwork that uses the historic symbol as its central theme. VOA’s Julie Taboh was at the DC Chamber of Commerce for the show’s opening.

VOA Blogs