DUBAI: Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief Lt-Gen Zaheerul Islam will call for an end to US drone strikes in the tribal areas and push for a sharing of technology and intelligence during a visit to Washington this week, Interior Minister Rehman Malik said on Monday.
Lt Gen Islam’s meeting with CIA Director General David Petraeus will be his first since he became head of the ISI in March and follows a thaw in relations between Pakistan and the United States.
“We will push for no drones. If we (Pakistan and the US) are partners, we should sit together and have a common strategy. However, in this regional war there has been no common strategy against a common enemy,” Malik told a news conference in Dubai.
Earlier, a senior Pakistani security official said Lt Gen Islam would demand an end to US attacks and again ask for the means for Pakistan to carry out the attacks instead.
“I hope the visit of the director of the ISI will have good results. There is some dialogue going on as we speak,” Malik added.
The United States has given no hint it is willing to halt the drone strikes.
“Both countries have to find a mid-way,” Malik told reporters. “This of course means intelligence-sharing. Also, give us the technology and we will use it. The US has given us F16s. Are we misusing it?”
He gave no further details but Pakistan has long asked the United States to provide it with its own drones for use in its tribal areas.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 31st, 2012.
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