Islamabad, Sep 28: Pakistan has informed the US that it will be forced to retaliate if American forces attempt to launch a unilateral strike on the country’s tribal belt that the US has said is a safe haven for Taliban elements, according to a media report today (Sept 28).
The message was personally delivered by Inter-Services Intelligence powerful chief Lt Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha to CIA head Gen David Petraeus during the former’s recent trip to Washington, an official familiar with the development told The Express Tribune newspaper.
The unnamed official said Pasha had informed Petraeus that the “Pakistani people will not tolerate any US misadventure” and the government will be left with no other option but to retaliate if American troops launch a unilateral raid, the report said.
Senior ISI members had felt “betrayed” by US military chief Adm Mike Mullen’s “blunt assessment” that the ISI had links with the Afghan Taliban-allied Haqqani network, the official said.
Mullen has accused the ISI of supporting the Haqqani network to target US forces in Afghanistan. The US has been pressing Pakistan to launch a military offensive against the Haqqanis in North Waziristan.
However, in a closed-door meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Defence yesterday, a senior ISI official said the US was “simply attempting to make Pakistan the scapegoat to cover up its failures” in Afghanistan, the report said.