Dawn News

Interior Minister Rehman Malik

DUBAI:  Interior Minister Rehman Malik said on Monday that  Pakistan's spy chief will call for an end to US drone strikes in its tribal areas bordering Afghanistan and push for a sharing of technology and intelligence during a visit to Washington this week.

“We will push for no drones. If we (Pakistan and the US) are partners, we should sit together and have a common strategy." However, in this regional war there has been no common strategy against a common enemy,” Interior Minister Rehman Malik told a news conference in Dubai.

“I hope the visit of the director of the ISI will have good results. There is some dialogue going on as we speak,” he said.

The United States has given no sign it is willing to halt the drone strikes.

“Both countries have to find a mid-way,” Malik told reporters. “This of course means intelligence-sharing. Also, give us the technology and we will use it. The US has given us F16s. Are we misusing it?

Lieutenant-General Zaheer ul-Islam's visit to meet CIA director General David Petraeus will be his first since he became head of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in March and follows a thaw in relations between Pakistan and the United States.

Pakistan, however, continues to insist US drone strikes - which it says are a breach of its sovereignty - must end.

The country has been increasingly vocal in its public opposition to the drones. Pakistan’s leaders had quietly approved initially but now say they are a violation of sovereignty and insist they fan anti-US sentiment.

US officials are understood to believe the attacks too important to give up, although the number declined as relations between the nominal allies plunged to their lowest in a decade.

But on July 3 Islamabad agreed to end a seven-month blockade on Nato supplies travelling overland to Afghanistan after the United States apologised for the deaths of 24 Pakistani soldiers in botched air strikes last November.

Earlier today, Pakistani officials said that a ban on Nato trucks at the main border crossing into Afghanistan will last until the government promises to safeguard security.

Comments (6) Closed

Cyrus Howell
Jul 30, 2012 02:59pm
"A push for a sharing of technology and intelligence during a visit to Washington this week." That will never happen.
Jul 30, 2012 06:06pm
The Pakistani leaders live in a world of their own where no one else lives. Why would United States share intelligence and technology when they view their relationship with Pakistan as purely transactional. No more, no less. Does Pakistan not understand that ?
ashwani dogra
Jul 30, 2012 06:38pm
I do not understand why - given that drone strikes kill innocent women and children - the dead would feel happier that the missiles were fired by their government.
Imtiaz Faruqui
Jul 30, 2012 07:55pm
Dr. A. Jamil
Jul 30, 2012 10:45pm
If you claim to be my friend then fester friendship not misgivings and hatred fear. I will exchange my heart and soul with you if you do the same.
Jul 31, 2012 02:04am
Why Government is shifting its burden of foreign policy failure to ISI chief. Why Army is willing to carry this baggage.