Pakistan Expels 90 US Military Trainers From Tribal Areas

Officials Say Two Thirds of Entire Training Contingent Has Been Ousted

Pakistan’s military announced late Tuesday that it has expelled 90 US military trainers from the country, leaving only a third of the original 135 trainer contingent left in the tribal areas. The troops were there to train the Frontier Corps paramilitaries in the tribal areas.

The move was the latest in a growing number of moves by the Pakistani government to reduce the US force in the country to the “minimum essential” since early May. The moves are retaliation for the unilateral raid that killed Osama bin Laden, as well as raids and drone strikes since then.

The Pentagon had confirmed late last month that it had begun reducing the number of troops in response to Pakistan’s demands. They declined to say how many troops were in the nation overall but they claimed to have in excess of 200 soldiers engaged in training and support missions alone.

Pakistan’s demand came with a parallel demand that the US stop launching US drone strikes, however, and there is no indication of that happening, with a number of strikes over the past three days leaving at least 45 tribesmen dead.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.