Senior US commanders discuss border cooperation with Kayani

Published: March 28, 2012

General James Mattis, the head of US Central Command, and General John Allen, the US commander in Afghanistan, had arrived in Pakistan and would meet Chief of Army Staff Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani later Wednesday. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

ISLAMABAD: Two top US generals held talks with the Pakistan army chief on Wednesday, in the first such meeting since air strikes killed 24 Pakistani soldiers four months ago, the Pakistan army said.

It is the first high level meeting after Salala incident. The meeting focused on the inquiry into the incident and improvements in Border Coordination Procedures.

Earlier in the day, they called on General Khalid Shameem Wynne, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee. General James N. Mattis and General John Allen discussed bilateral defence matters, and the emerging geo strategic situation of the region, with the Chairman.

General Mattis, and General Allen, had arrived in Pakistan for a pre-scheduled official tour.

The November 26 strikes, for which the United States has so far refused to apologise, prompted Pakistan to shut its Afghan border to NATO supplies and evict American personnel from an air base reportedly used in its drone war against al Qaeda and the Taliban.

The Pakistani army said the meeting would focus “on the inquiry into the incident and improvements in border coordination procedures”.

A Pakistani security official, speaking to AFP confirmed that the American generals had arrived in Pakistan, but declined to give any further information until after the meeting had taken place later in the afternoon.

On Thursday, US President Barack Obama met Pakistan’s Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani at a nuclear summit in Seoul, and vowed to rescue their troubled alliance which almost ruptured over months of mistrust and recriminations.

It was the highest-level exchange between the two sides since the killing of Osama bin Laden in a clandestine US raid on Pakistan last May.

Reader Comments (44)

  • ahmad
    Mar 28, 2012 - 1:02PM

    sale sale sale military bases for sale, army for rent we need dollars, we need plots…. sale sale sale

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  • Hafiz Shah Ali
    Mar 28, 2012 - 1:05PM

    A good start.
    Discussions and dialouge,respect,trust and cooperation are the way forward

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  • Mar 28, 2012 - 1:08PM

    I thought he said “I wont meet any US official until and unless parliament takes final decision on formulating new policy”…

    M i wrong?

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  • Mirza Zulfiqar Baig
    Mar 28, 2012 - 1:12PM

    How mercilessly they slaughtered our 24 soldiers. Nation should never forget this terrible incident.

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  • Yaida
    Mar 28, 2012 - 1:19PM

    I wish Gen Kayani would also take some of the responsibility for opening the NATO supply routes again. It is obvious that he wants it so that Pakistan can get monetary and military aid. But his statement that it is up to the Parliament shows that he is passing the buck. If there is a backlash he wants the civilian government to bear the brunt of it. That is not a very brave thing to do.

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  • Aristo
    Mar 28, 2012 - 1:27PM

    What will come after GERONIMO????

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  • Shah
    Mar 28, 2012 - 1:33PM

    @ahmad:

    yeah right..do u really think you made nuclear arsenal through ur taxed paid money…

    PLOTSSS….live once how service men live than talk. A General becomes general after being promoted from a capt…..he goes through all the troubles of life..like you…

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  • PARDESI
    Mar 28, 2012 - 2:07PM

    @ahmad:
    How pathetic this comment is

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  • UFF
    Mar 28, 2012 - 2:23PM

    Military for Sale is Enemy’s Voice…..Do You?

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  • Uzair Javaid
    Mar 28, 2012 - 2:38PM

    This man lacks morality eversince Geronimo operation! he has no standing, the man cant even lift his head up in front the most corruptest government in Pakistan. What could we expect to see when US or NATO generals come in to see him.

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  • Parvez
    Mar 28, 2012 - 2:44PM

    The perception that our armed forces are ‘ up for rent ‘ must be removed, this is vital.

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  • Opinion
    Mar 28, 2012 - 4:04PM

    No talks before a formal apology.
    No to direct aid or compensation in dollars.
    Route for supplies ‘IF’ opened, only Railways to carry the cargo. We can recover losses and double our long awaited railway track.

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  • Adil
    Mar 28, 2012 - 4:43PM

    Don’t forget to ask for an increase in your pocket money. Monthly allowance for you and the rest General Sahab :)

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  • wanderer
    Mar 28, 2012 - 5:13PM

    @ahmad:
    WE are a nation without a pedestal, some days before it was said that until parliament decides no military contact will be allowed. I think till today Parliament has not decided yet?????? arn;t we remote controlled like drones.

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  • Cautious
    Mar 28, 2012 - 5:26PM

    Based on the comments it’s obvious that Pakistanis have esteem issues. It’s just a meeting – that’s what you do when you discuss things. One side doesn’t have to dominate or grovel – they have to listen and discuss.

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  • Jan
    Mar 28, 2012 - 6:05PM

    @ahmad:
    Thats a pathetic statement. Just because he is meeting the US generals, you have come to a conclusion…

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  • adeel759
    Mar 28, 2012 - 6:07PM

    @Cautious. Bottom line is Civillian Dumbs need to learn to refuse to take the reigns from Generals when these Generals have srewed the country. Everytime they mess it up they bring Civillian into power and throw all the blame on them.

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  • adeel759
    Mar 28, 2012 - 6:09PM

    One needs to Save this country from this Fauj. This Fauj has proved to be the worst enemy of this nation if actions speak louder than words.

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  • Balma
    Mar 28, 2012 - 6:33PM

    Does Kyani have permission from the government to meet foreign military men?

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  • Shah
    Mar 28, 2012 - 6:37PM

    @wanderer:

    and may be the parliament has decided.

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  • pakistan united
    Mar 28, 2012 - 6:47PM

    adeel is right

    what pakistan army did

    they kill our baloch brothers,they cant save common man from taliban.

    baloch was more loyal to pakistan then others.

    pakistan people want army to have peace talks with angry balochs first

    then can talk peace with taliban

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  • Skin Taj
    Mar 28, 2012 - 6:55PM

    “Pakistan’s intelligence service would no longer carry out joint raids with U.S. counterterrorist teams inside its country, as it had in the past. Instead, Pakistan would demand that the U.S. hand over the intelligence, so its forces could pursue targets on their own in urban areas, or send the Pakistani army , helicopter or jets to attack the targets in the tribal areas.”

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  • Wonderful
    Mar 28, 2012 - 6:58PM

    @Jan:
    Look at his number of recommedations and you will find your answer.

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  • a pakistani civilian, that is a bloody civilian
    Mar 28, 2012 - 7:57PM

    my very dear american lords, drone pakistani civilians to pieces, no problem. our defence forces are there to supply fuel to your drones. but never ever attack the defenders of these civilians, the boys in the uniform. because then they stop supplies to your troops in afghanistan. not a bad bargain for americans. and our defenders as well.

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  • Tony C.
    Mar 28, 2012 - 8:09PM

    I recall that General Mattis, who is the boss man at Cent Com said that they, the Americans, were not really sure where the Pakistan/Afghanistan border was on the 26th November, 2011, which resulted in the deaths of 24 Pakistani soldiers. Can anybody believe that? They, the Americans, had been in the area for 10 years and did not know where the border was. At the time I did point out to General Mattis that he could borrow my GPS system, but he did not take me up on it. So what now? It is obvious that the Americans, in their own words, need all the help they can get, at least in the navigational area, but was General Mattis telling the truth? President Obama has told us that his men navigated all the way across Pakistan, in the middle of the night, and managed to reach Abbottabad. Also, Leon Panetta, the U.S. Defence Secretary, is quite proud of the fact that his men can guide drones all over Pakistan killing people, a few of which happen to be militants. So the Americans kill Pakistani soldiers, and several thousand innocent people, but do not apologize, which means they think they have not done anything wrong, or do not care. My sympathy is with Pakistani General Kayani. He will be dealing with a group of men who kill Pakistani people with impunity, do not feel bad about it, and do not intend to change their methodology. The answer is as always. Tell them to go home and leave South Asia in relative peace.

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  • Mar 28, 2012 - 10:09PM

    United States and Pakistan always had open dialogue and a good working relationship till late last year. We fully understand that the Salala incident became an obstacle in our working relationship, and we are diligently working to overcome it. It is a sign of significant progress that our leadership is meeting one on one to resolve any issues that may be standing. President Obama, after meeting with Prime Minister Gilani in Seoul yesterday, said, “I want to express my appreciation to Prime Minister Gilani for the work that he has done in trying to strengthen the relationship between our two countries. There have been times — I think we should be frank — over the last several months where those relations have experienced strains. But I welcome the fact that the parliament in Pakistan is reviewing, after some extensive study, the nature of this relationship. I think that it’s important for us to get it right. I think it’s important for us to have candid dialogue to work through these issues in a constructive fashion and a transparent fashion.”

    Is it not important for our two countries to get over any hurdle, so people of the region who are suffering at the hands of the terrorists get some immediate relief? We have proved before that by working together, we have effectively neutralized terrorists. The spike in the attacks can be effectively countered with cooperation. Would you not agree?

    Maj David Nevers
    DET-United States Central Command
    http://www.centcom.mil/ur

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  • logic Europe
    Mar 28, 2012 - 11:33PM

    @US CENTCOM
    in an overwhelmingly illitrate country where people learn to repeat the same mantra again and again it is pointless to be logical .. therir logic comes from Millas who are really illitrate and have narrow vision and one day they will make Pakistan just like Afghanistan

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  • Usman786
    Mar 28, 2012 - 11:52PM

    @US CENTCOM:
    u r talking about terrorist who re ur friends in 80s??? Defence secretary must be present in such meetings and no one to one meetings.
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  • Gahratmand
    Mar 28, 2012 - 11:55PM

    @Logic Europe – Your acceptance that Pakistan is separate from Afghanistan and very different is the right approach – This AfPak nonsense needs to GI away ;(

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  • Tony C.
    Mar 29, 2012 - 12:16AM

    @Usman786:
    Dear Usman,
    I quite agree with you. What is the point of America sending junior personnel to Pakistan to discuss important political problems? It is a waste of time sending military people over. They are basically trained to carry out two functions: obey orders and kill people. Obviously, the military are totally unsuitable for diplomatic work.

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  • Yusuf
    Mar 29, 2012 - 12:24AM

    Communicate Pakistan Interest to the United State. The United State will listen quietly to genuine demand as well as open doors to American technologies for good of Pakistan. We must come together on grounds like education, social uplift, export access of Pakistan products, cultural exchanges, building infrastructure includings roads, bridges, irrigation canal systems, dams, power generations, that will help common Pakistani. There are many agriculatural technologies that America will be willing to share as well as grant to Pakistan companies. Pakistan must secure seed processing to be fully secure in food production for its growing population. The list of demands are endless and Pakistan must make right demand for its growing economy. Lets demand from the American like Oil Exploration Equipments, Gas Exploration Equipments as well as processing. Lets work together in bringing Americn know how related to Oil, Coal, and Gas development in Pakistan. Lets communicate to the American that this time around Pakistan is Real Serious in building its economy to catch up with rest of the emerging nations. Lets shift our Focus to building Pakistan Economy, by making Genuine demand, America will listen this time around.

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  • Aqeel
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:13AM

    I agree, we should not forget the tragedy but it does not mean we should never nogotiate with U.S and solve our problems. We gave them a strong message but we need them as they do Pakistan.

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  • harry stone
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:48AM

    @Yusuf:

    That would appear to be a goal of a reasonable foriegn policy that PAK would develop. It is not however the goal or policy that will be presented. It will deal with not killing terrorist without PAK premission and for America to smooth PAK hurt feelings.

    This why PAK is digging a huge hole with its relationship with the US. PAK may feel that America can do much for it and America might. What PAK fails to see is that America can cause great damage to PAK by doing nothing other than not supporting PAK. At this point PAK has provided no reason for America to support PAK.

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  • SaudiRules
    Mar 29, 2012 - 1:53AM

    Chhooo…Chhoook…Chhooo…Chhoook…can i have your attention please. All khkai officers and generals! The delayed Uncle sam gravy express train will be arriving soon! Get ready, All aboard, All aboard.

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  • Hadi Ansari
    Mar 29, 2012 - 2:41AM

    There are two ways to solve disagreement between two parties.First one is emotional or crudely speaking fight to death.Second one is rational or through negotiation.I believe that majority of Pakistanis want the issues settled through negotiation.Surely NATO / USA know that their troops deliberately fired at Pakistani post killing dozens of solders.
    What Gen.kayani is doing is what a matured and intelligent person would have done.He is a cool headed person with national interest at heart.For those commentators who dislike their army and the generals for whatever reasons,don’t forget that your army isvthe only institution worth any respect and certainly less corrupt than the policians.
    It is mutually beneficial and sensible thing for Pakistan and US to interact more often than not.Issues are sorted out through negotiation.

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  • @plarkin
    Mar 29, 2012 - 3:43AM

    A sensible and welcome step. Both countries need this relationship and must work together to defeat terrorism and not allow the Taliban to return to power in Afghanistan or to menace the Pakistan state.

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  • ayesha
    Mar 29, 2012 - 4:02AM

    @Parvez: “The perception that our armed forces are ‘ up for rent ‘ must be removed, this is vital.

    When the perception is rooted in reality, it is difficulty to change it.

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  • Blithe
    Mar 29, 2012 - 5:29AM

    Only party standing in the way of the supply
    route in PML N.

    Full credit to Ch. Nisar!

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  • Mar 29, 2012 - 8:59PM

    @US CENTCOM:
    Dear Major Nevers Your replies to various quires the Pakistan boarder incident and the Massacre of the Afghan civilians would be acceptable if you directed your answers to the actual questions posed.
    Your weaponry used in the boarder incident is mainly GPS guided how could it possibly get the boarder so wrong when the us propaganda tells us the system is so accurate a method it could knock the eye of a gnat out.
    Or maybe you could explain why the following has not been done. on the Afghanistan massacre.
    AS I have said many times this could be cleared up in a few hours! simply collect the spent ammunition and subject it to simple police Ballistic examination! If the ammunition collected from the scene and from the dead is examined and the ballistic markings match one weapon then it would be evidence of just one soldier. If the Ballistics markings do not match then bingo! we have our answer, more than one weapon; more than one soldier, the number of the Ballistic markings can determine the minimum number of weapons and thus soldiers involved! simple really, basic police work ; forensic evidence undisputed!

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  • Mar 29, 2012 - 9:10PM

    Dear General Mathis ,Major Nevers.
    The US Military intrusion into or onto Pakistani sovereign territory is an act of aggressive war on civilians! I am sure you are aware that the USA is a signatory of the Hague and Geneva conventions.
    These acts of war are detailed in the articles of the conventions as being the most heinous crimes against humanity possible! After the second world war these crimes committed by the NAZI military were punished by the Nuremberg tribunals with the death penalty. You gentlemen should really be considering your position.

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  • Tony C.
    Mar 29, 2012 - 9:53PM

    @logic Europe:
    Dear logic Europe,
    When you mentioned that some people keep on repeating the same meaningless mantra again and again I initially thought you were writing about leaders from the American/Israel/NATO combo. However, my first reading was rather quick and then I realized my mistake.

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  • Tony C.
    Mar 29, 2012 - 11:11PM

    @US CENTCOM:
    Dear Major Nevis,
    We really have to stop meeting like this. I am afraid I have to disagree with you on almost every point. Unfortunately, everything you said was based on emotional and meaningless rhetoric that could have been a type of fantasy discussion in any geographical area of the world. Unfortunately, you and I and the Pakistan people generally are living in a reality situation, and sooner or later Washington has to get out of its very own dream world and face reality. You and your buddies have been creating mayhem in the Pakistan/Afghanistan locality for about 25 years now, and using more deadly force for the last 10 years going on 11. In the last ten, when you became serious for utterly misguided reasons, you killed and injured and maimed thousands of innocent people, destroyed their houses and infrastructure, and created an environment which would make Hades appear quite pleasant in comparison. And what have you got for it? The terrorists, to use your words, have not been neutralized. They are still holding at bay a few hundred thousand U.S./NATO troops, which includes mercenaries, and killing many of them on a routine basis. Eventually, you will get out, with the area in turmoil, and then the Afghans will have to get to grips with a victorious Taliban. To use the famous words of Osama Bin Laden,:”We do not wish to win this war. We just want to keep the Americans fighting and send them bankrupt”. It would appear that Osama Bin Ladens policy has been realized. To conclude Major, General Mattis is being disingenuous. The bottom line as to what he wants is to continually violate Pakistan sovereignty without penalty.

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  • Mar 30, 2012 - 12:19AM

    @US CENTCOM:
    Dear Major Nevers,
    In this article I intend to answer your letter directly and the pertinent points raised by that correspondence.
    I remember the initial negotiations with Pakistan’s General Musharraf and the then Chief of staff Colin Powell.Your assertion that the US and Pakistan have always had an open dialogue and good working relationship belies the Musharraf Powell negotiations; where Powell offered a shower of US aid or shower of US bombs driving them back to the stone age.
    This arrogant disdain for other nations is symptomatic of US foreign policy towards the political independence, sovereignty and territory of others.
    There is a certain disingenuous nature to General Mathis negotiations with General General Khalid Shameem Wynne just as the continued violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty continues through the drone attacks.
    Your appreciation of what you term Prime minister Gilani’s work is somewhat premature, the prime minister unlike your leadership is constrained by his political adversaries and Pakistan’s general public opinion and reaction. Whereas the UN-elected public official Leon Paneta the secretary of defense of course is not so constrained! in his latest statement he stated that “the Afghan war would continue despite American public opinion and opposition by several of the congressmen and senators”.
    You assertion that the people of the region will benefit from this relationship and the attempt to counter terrorism misses the point entirely! your illegal occupation and state terrorism visited on the region by the US military and it’s NATO and Coalition partners is the cause of the violence. The Taliban have the right no less the duty to attack these foreign forces to counter and prevent the continued war crimes being committed by these foreign forces.Your only option Major is to withdraw your war criminal forces and leave the region in peace not in the pieces that US policy appears to predicate.

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  • Mar 30, 2012 - 2:55AM

    In view of my implacable opposition to the current US administration it’s military and foreign policy, my indefatigable efforts to impress upon the US administration and it’s unelected Secretaries of various departments, the failed attempt to prevail over sovereign nations, the US military having lost every war since Korea. The attempted full spectrum dominance of the US Empire is all for naught. As this Empire looses sway the military lashes out against those who oppose it endangering the US economy, finances and civil liberties of the domestic population. I take it I will be on the T.S.A. N.S.A. CIA no fly list and may even make it to the point where your President feels it necessary to have me murdered by one of your Hell Fire missile firing drones. This will not stop the criticism of the outrageous behavior of the USA.

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