Pakistan Presses US for Answers on Drone Strike Plans

FM Seeks 'Clarification' on Reports 'Rules' For Killings Don't Apply in Pakistan

by Jason Ditz, January 23, 2013

Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Khar has met with US Ambassador Richard Olson today, pressing the US diplomat on reports that the Obama Administration’s new “playbook” defining the rules for assassinations has explicitly excluded Pakistan to allow the CIA to continue drone strikes there with impunity.

Khar also expressed concerns about reports that the US is planning to escalate its enormous drone war against Pakistan’s tribal areas, a huge sore spot in the relationship between the two nations and likely a top election issue in Pakistan in the next few months.

Members of the Pakistani Senate blasted reports of the US escalation yesterday, saying that the US strikes against Pakistani territory not only violate the nation’s sovereignty but also international law.

The US has repeatedly shrugged off Pakistani complaints about drone strikes, saying they assume Pakistan is giving them “tacit consent” since they haven’t done anything to physically force them to stop attacking the tribal areas. The strikes have killed thousands since President Obama first took office, and only a few dozen of the victims have ever been identified.

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