Pak army chief for conditional intelligence exchange with US

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Islamabad, Jun 10: In sign of changing dynamics of US-Pak military ties post-Osama bin Laden, Pakistan's powerful army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani has laid down conditions for intelligence sharing with the Americans.

He also brushed aside possibility of a full scale military operation in North Waziristan at this stage under pressure from the US.

A meeting of the Pakistan Army's Corps Commanders chaired by army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani yesterday decided to share intelligence with the US "strictly on the basis of reciprocity and complete transparency".

"It has been clearly put across to US intelligence officials that no intelligence agency can be allowed to carry out independent operation on our soil," said an unusually detailed statement issued by the military after the meeting of the army's top commanders.

Kayani informed his commanders that military to military relationship with the US has to be viewed within the larger ambit of bilateral relations between the two countries.

It had to be assessed afresh in the backdrop of May 2 incident (when unilateral raid by US killed bin Laden) as well as the dictates of the Joint Parliamentary Resolution passed on May 14, the statement said adding aspirations of the people of Pakistan also need to be taken into account.

"In line with the demands of these important factors, Army has drastically cut down the strength of US troops stationed in Pakistan. It needs to be clarified that Army had never accepted any training assistance from the US except for training on the newly inducted weapons and some training assistance for the Frontier Corps only. Even that has ceased now," it said.


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