News / Asia

Pakistan Denies Return of US Trainers

Pakistan army soldiers patrol in the vicinity of the army training camp in Mardan near Peshawar, Pakistan. (File)
Pakistan army soldiers patrol in the vicinity of the army training camp in Mardan near Peshawar, Pakistan. (File)
VOA News
The Pakistani military is denying that U.S. military trainers have returned to the country, a move that would indicate a thawing of relations after coalition airstrikes mistakenly killed 24 Pakistani troops last November.

The Reuters news agency reported Wednesday that "fewer than 10" U.S. special operations soldiers had been sent back to a training site in northwestern Pakistan.  But in a text message to VOA Thursday, Pakistani military officials said the report was "incorrect, misleading and baseless."   

Pakistan suspended the U.S. training program and shut down the ground supply routes for U.S. and NATO soldiers into Afghanistan in response to the airstrike last year near the Afghan border. Coalition officials said the deadly strikes were an accident.

Doctor who helped CIA

In another development, a Pakistani militant group has denied having any ties to the doctor who helped Washington locate al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.

Members of Lashkar-e-Islam said Thursday the group had no links to Shakil Afridi.  They called him a traitor and an enemy of Islam, and said they would punish him themselves if given the opportunity.

A court document released Wednesday showed a tribal court in the northwestern Khyber agency convicted Afridi of assisting militants in the region. The judgment said the doctor met with commanders of Lashkar-e-Islam, giving them medical treatment and financial help.

The court sentenced Afridi last week to 33 years in prison. He was accused of running a fake vaccination campaign to help the CIA obtain genetic samples of bin Laden and his family to confirm the al-Qaida leader's presence at a compound in the Pakistani city of Abbottabad. U.S. special forces killed bin Laden in a covert raid last May.

The document also says an investigation report contains evidence that Afridi collaborated with foreign intelligence agencies, but that the court in Khyber has no jurisdiction to act on the evidence. The tribal court recommended that such evidence may be produced before an appropriate court for further proceedings.

Afridi's brother, Jamil Afridi, said this week that Shakil did not get a fair trial and vowed to appeal the verdict. In an interview with VOA, Jamil Afridi also expressed concerns about his brother's detention, saying he should be given protection inside prison.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.

You May Like

Turbulent Transition Imperils Tunisia’s Arab Spring Gains

Critics say new anti-terrorism laws worsen Tunisia's situation while others put faith in country’s vibrant civil organizations, women’s movement More

Burundi’s Political Crisis May Become Humanitarian One

United Nations aid agencies issue warning as deadly violence sends tens of thousands fleeing More

Yemenis Adjust to Life Under Houthi Rule

Locals want warring parties to strike deal to stop bloodletting before deciding how country is governed More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Frank
May 31, 2012 5:35 PM
the above report is incomplete. I read this somewhere that he had close ties to Lashkar e Islam and it is reflected from the fact that he gave some $12,000 to them too. This amounts to something at least. Also the punishment is on 4 different counts ... needless to say that putting lives of children in jeopardy by not professionally giving his services as a doctor and funding a banned outfit is a crime.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threati
X
Greg Flakus
May 29, 2015 11:24 PM
Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threat

Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video New York's One World Trade Center Observatory Opens to Public

From New Jersey to Long Island, from Northern suburbs to the Atlantic Ocean, with all of New York City in-between.  That view became available to the public Friday as the One World Trade Center Observatory opened in New York -- atop the replacement for the buildings destroyed in the September 11, 2001, attacks.  VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports.
Video

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
Video

Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

VOA Blogs