Pakistan at Impasse With U.S. on Drone Attacks After Meetings With Mullen

A visit by U.S. President Barack Obama’s top military officer to Pakistan underscored disagreements over the use of drone aircraft to target militants in the country’s mountainous northwest.

Admiral Mike Mullen, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, said his country won’t stop the attacks in Pakistan’s tribal areas bordering Afghanistan. He expressed concern that Pakistani intelligence has a “longstanding relationship” with a militant Afghan group headed by U.S.-designated terrorists.

Pakistan’s military chief, General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, reiterated his nation’s stance that the U.S. missile strikes undermine efforts to defeat guerrillas by draining support for the army’s anti-insurgency efforts. Mullen was in Islamabad to ease diplomatic tensions that soured after a Central Intelligence Agency contractor, Raymond Davis, on Jan. 27 shot and killed two armed Pakistanis he said were trying to rob him.

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