US shares ’sensitive’ drone images with Pakistan, but conditionallyMay 14th, 2009 - 12:41 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, May 14 (ANI): Taking its relationship with Pakistan on the use of drones a step further, the United States, has for the first time, provided Islamabad surveillance information, including sensitive border photographs collected by the drones.
The information includes real-time video feeds and communications intercepts gleaned by unmanned Predator aircrafts, The New York Times reports.
It is unclear whether this cooperation would continue as such associations in the past have come unstuck.
“We’re going after terrorists plotting directly against the United States and its interests. Nobody wants to gamble with those kinds of targets. We tried a joint approach before, and it didn’t work. Those are facts that can’t be ignored,” an American intelligence operative said.
US officials have also refuted media reports that Pakistan has been given joint control of American drones inside Pakistan.
Pakistan President Ali Zardari has been pressing the United States to provide drones, to enable Islamabad to carry out strikes against the Taliban and other extremist groups on its own.
The Obama administration however, has been skeptical over giving drones or even sharing sophistiocated technology with Pakistan, fearing misuse.
“This is technology we haven’t given to our closest allies, the Brits or the Australians or NATO,” said one senior American official who is working on Pakistan issues.
The United States believes the Predators and now the more sophisticated drone called the Reaper, have been among the most successful weapons against the Taliban , Al-Qaeda and other militant outfits. (ANI)
Tags: al qaeda, ali, allies, american intelligence, australians, brits, drone, drones, extremist groups, intercepts, militant outfits, new york times, pakistan, predators, reaper, strikes, taliban, unmanned predator, video feeds, zardari