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Secrecy and denial as Pakistan lets CIA use airbase to strike militants


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Author Topic: Secrecy and denial as Pakistan lets CIA use airbase to strike militants  (Read 46 times)
Calliope
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« on: February 18, 2009, 12:23:25 pm »

The CIA is secretly using an airbase in southern Pakistan to launch the Predator drones that observe and attack al-Qaeda and Taleban militants on the Pakistani side of the border with Afghanistan, a Times investigation has found.

The Pakistani and US governments have repeatedly denied that Washington is running military operations, covert or otherwise, on Pakistani territory a hugely sensitive issue in the predominantly Muslim country.

The Pakistani Government has also repeatedly demanded that the US halt drone attacks on northern tribal areas that it says have caused hundreds of civilian casualties and fuelled anti-American sentiment.

But The Times has discovered that the CIA has been using the Shamsi airfield originally built by Arab sheikhs for falconry expeditions in the southwestern province of Baluchistan for at least a year. The strip, which is about 30 miles from the Afghan border, allows US forces to launch a Drone within minutes of receiving actionable intelligence as well as allowing them to attack targets further afield.

more at: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/asia/article5755490.ece
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