UN dubs US air strikes on Pak tribal areas a bilateral issue

November 21st, 2008 - 2:30 pm ICT by ANI  


Lahore, Nov 21 (ANI): The United Nations has reportedly said that the US drone strikes inside the Pakistani territory were a bilateral issue between the two countries, and that they must themselves resolve the issue.

The two countries must resolve the issue through dialogue, the Daily Times quoted a UN spokesman as saying in an interview with a TV channel.

The issue of US air strikes on Pakistan has lately rocked the ties between the two countries, with Islamabad making repeated requests to Washington to stop them saying that they were an attack on its sovereignty. Pakistan officials have also often said that the US attacks were generating anti-US sentiments making it difficult for the federal government to convince its citizens.

For more than two months, the US has been launching drone attacks on Pakistani tribal areas bordering Afghanistan in pursuit of Taliban and Al Qaeda elements. But, on Wednesday, a drone attack was carried out in a non-tribal area Bannu, on the outerskirts of Peshawar killing a key Taliban leader. The attack, however, evoked a strong response from Islamabad, and last evening the Pakistan government summoned US envoy Anne Pietersen to air its concerns and protest.

On the occasion, the country’’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi reiterated Pakistan’’s stance over US violations of its sovereignty, saying that the ”unilateral attacks” were not helping counter-terrorism efforts, the Daily Times quoted sources as saying.

Pakistan foreign ministry spokesman Muhammad Sadiq said that the foreign secretary had conveyed Pakistan’’s condemnation of the attack to the US ambassador. “The foreign secretary also emphasised that the drone attacks are undermining public support for the government’’s counter-terrorism efforts … and stressed the attacks must be stopped,” he told reporters. (ANI)

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