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US to resume drone strikes inside Pakistan

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad, Jan 9, IRNA -- A Pakistani daily on Monday reported that America’s Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is likely to resume the drone campaign inside Pakistan.

Daily ‘Express Tribune’ said that Pakistan and US have almost agreed on ‘fresh terms of engagements’ to resume drone attacks against suspected al-Qaeda members and their local facilitators hiding in the tribal areas, including North and South Waziristan.

The US had suspended the drone campaign following a deadly Nato airstrike on Pakistani border posts that had killed 24 soldiers.

The newspaper said this time the frequency and intensity of drone attacks would not be as high as it was in the past.

Though the parliamentary committee on the national security is still working out new terms of engagement with the US, it was recently reported that top intelligence officials from Pakistan and the US were already busy in secret talks to lower tensions.

Officials said the resumption of drone strikes might be under new conditions. They added that Pakistani negotiators had convinced their American counterparts on at least a couple of conditions: First, the drone strikes should not be as frequent as they were in 2010 and 2011. And second, the CIA should narrow the stripe the aircraft were targeting under the approach known as ‘box formation’ in military terms.

Since 2004, US drones have carried out more than 300 attacks inside Pakistan. Majority in Pakistan describes these drone strikes as a sheer violation of country’s sovereignty.

Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 30756394

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