ISLAMABAD: Pakistan, on Monday, strongly condemned a jump in US drone strikes on its territory, as a deadlock between the two strategic allies over the attacks remains unresolved.
Three drone strikes in as many days on suspected militants have killed 27 people, Pakistani intelligence officials say.
The foreign ministry called the attacks “illegal” and said they violated the country’s sovereignty.
A statement released on Monday said that the strategic disadvantages of the strikes far outweigh the tactical benefits, hence totally counterproductive.
Washington and Islamabad are deadlocked in negotiations over the re-opening of land supply routes to Nato forces in Afghanistan. One of the conditions put forward by Pakkistan’s Parliament to re-open the routes is a halt in the strikes.
Islamabad blocked the supply routes in November after 24 Pakistani soldiers were killed by cross-border ‘friendly fire’ from Nato aircraft.
The supply lines are considered vital to the planned withdrawal of most foreign combat troops from Afghanistan before the end of 2014.
The Pakistan’s government says the CIA drone campaign fuels anti-American sentiment in the country, and is counterproductive because of the collateral damage – civilian deaths – it causes.
US officials say such strikes by the remotely piloted aircraft are a highly effective way of attacking militants and are an important weapon in the war against militancy. They maintain that the attacks are per US laws.