- Jan 9, 2012
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has spelt out in no uncertain terms that US drone attacks inside its territory must stop, but Washington is not listening, the country's foreign minister said.
"On drones, the language is clear: a clear cessation of drone strikes," Hina Rabbani Khar said.
"I maintain the position that we'd told them categorically before. But they did not listen. I hope their listening will improve," she told Reuters in an interview late on Wednesday.
The attacks by the unmanned aircraft from Afghanistan, which US officials say are highly effective against militants, fuel anti-American sentiment in Pakistan because they are seen as violations of sovereignty that inflict civilian casualties.
Khar's sharp comments on the drone strikes came ahead of a two-day visit to Islamabad by the United States' special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Marc Grossman.
Ambassador Grossman was due to hold bilateral meetings with Pakistani officials and take part in a "core group" meeting with officials from both Pakistan and Afghanistan, where the United States is hoping to revive stalled peace talks with the Taliban.
Khar said other methods should be used to take out militants in the border region between Afghanistan and Pakistan.
"We have to look at effective tools which are mutually acceptable. The cost of using tools which are not mutually acceptable is far, far too high. We're looking at alternatives," she said, without elaborating. (Reuters)
US not listening, drone strikes must stop: FM Khar - geo.tv