US planning new strategy to reduce tensions with Pak over drone issue

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Islamabad, July 15 (ANI): The United States is working out a new strategy to reduce tensions with Pakistan over the drone strikes.

The Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, Paul Jones, told the US Congress recently, that Washington is planning to broaden its public relations initiatives in Pakistan to enable it to understand the US tactics.

Jones highlighted that 'strategic communications' were the most important part of US tactics in Pakistan, The Daily Times reports.

He added the US is planning to increase financial assistance to Pakistan "quite significantly" in order to help Islamabad build its own communications strategy.

"Such programmes will help people understand what the goals of the Pakistani government and the international community are, and how they are helping the country of Pakistan," an article on the website Eurasiatnet quoted Jones, as saying.

Some US experts opine that the Pentagon is relying 'too much' on the drones to quell militancy from Pakistan's tribal region, but also highlighted that a better information strategy could help deescalate the tension substantially.

"Drone strikes excite visceral opposition across a broad spectrum of Pakistani opinion. The persistence of these attacks on Pakistani territory offends people's deepest sensibilities, alienates them from their government, and contributes to Pakistan's instability," Chief Executive Officer of a defense think-tank, Centre for a New American Security, Nathaniel Fick said.

"Currently, strikes from unmanned aircraft are carried out in a virtual vacuum, without concerted information campaigns or an equally robust strategy to engage the people," Fick added. (ANI)

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