Pakistan demands end to U.S. led drone airstrikes
Pakistani parliament unanimously agrees to new diplomatic guidelines with U.S.
Relations between the United States and Pakistan - an ostensible ally,
have been extremely strained as of late. Among many other tragedies was a
November 26 cross-border NATO air attack that killed 24 Pakistani
soldiers and plunged already troubled ties to their lowest point in
years. Now, Pakistan's parliament has unanimously agreed to new
diplomatic ties with the U.S., chief among them a demand for a ceasefire
from drone airstrikes.
Information Minister Firdos Ashiq Awan did not specify a course of action when asked whether Pakistan would re-open the supply routes to Afghanistan.
Gilani did not say whether Pakistan would reopen overland supply routes to U.S.-led NATO forces in Afghanistan. Information Minister Firdos Ashiq Awan did not specify a course of action when asked whether Pakistan would re-open the supply routes to Afghanistan.
"Parliament has given us some guidelines and principles. Keeping them in mind, and the will of the people, we will soon take an appropriate position on the matter," Awan told reporters.
Gilani called upon the United States, the source of billions of dollars in military and economic aid, to respect the South Asian nation's sovereignty.
Among the national security committee's main recommendations are a halt in drone strikes and an unconditional apology for the NATO attack.
In the meantime, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said the United States would look forward to discussing the parliamentary recommendations with Pakistan's government.
"We respect the seriousness with which parliament's review of U.S.-Pakistan relations has been conducted," Nuland said. "We seek a relationship with Pakistan that is enduring, strategic, and more clearly defined."
While Pakistani leaders have often criticized the drone program, analysts say successful strikes on high-profile al Qaeda and Taliban militants would be difficult without Pakistani cooperation.
The drone strikes fuel anti-American sentiment, are a violation of sovereignty and inflict civilian casualties, Pakistani officials claim.
The United States has been seeking Pakistan's cooperation to stabilize Afghanistan before most foreign combat troops leave at the end of 2014, due to its links with the Afghan Taliban and other militant groups.
Cooperation has been difficult to secure after a series of events, even before the NATO attack, including the U.S. special forces raid that killed Osama bin Laden on Pakistani soil in May last year which humiliated the powerful military.
© 2012, Catholic Online. Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM
Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2013
General Intention: Victimized Children. That children who are victims of abandonment or violence may find the love and protection they need.
Missionary Intention: Prepare the Savior's Coming. That Christians, enlightened by the Word incarnate, may prepare humanity for the Savior's coming.
Rate This Article
Leave a Comment
More Asia Pacific News
- Some Filipino Catholics called to task for their failure to fight corruption
- TRUE ENEMY: North Korea methamphetamine trade fueled by U.S. demand
- Oh my! It's raining dead mice on Guam!
- Breastfeeding for infant survivors of Typhoon Haiyan urged
- Cradle baby scheme in India cuts female infanticide
- In spite of U.S. military occupation, opium production at all-time high in Afghanistan
- China launches first moon mission with unmanned lunar probe
- IS THIS PROGRESS? Adulterers may now be stoned in Afghanistan
- Earliest ever 'Buddhist shrine' uncovered by archaeologists
- Fr. Paul Schenck: Finding Living Faith on Catechetical Sunday
- The Movie Yellow: Incest as 'Normal' and Cassavates's Slides Into the World of Woes
- The Chicago School Teachers Strike Reveals the Need For School Choice
- The Sexual Barbarians and the Dissolution of Culture
- The Happy Priest Challenges Us to Ask: Who is Jesus to Me?
- Michael Coren on Canadian Public Schools: Teachers, leave those kids alone
- We Cannot Ignore Our Consciences: Cardinal Dolan On Religious Liberty
- In the Face of Danger, Successor of Peter Travels to Lebanon as a Messenger of Peace
- Reflections on the Dignity and Vocation of Women: Who or What?