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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 1589

NATO Attacked Pak Check Post & Bonn Conference

By Zaheerul Hassan

Pak_Helicopters.JPGAccording to the Pakistani army official NATO helicopters fired on a Pakistani border checkpost on November 26, 2011, in which 28 soldiers including one Major and Capt have been martyred and many injured. The attack, have taken placed at the Salala checkpost, about 1.5 miles (2.5 km) from the Afghan border in the Mohmand region of Pakistan’s tribal belt. The attack could be converted into a new flash point in the already strained U.S.-Pakistan relations.

The Pakistani military called the strike “unprovoked and indiscriminate.” Government of Pakistan launched a strong protest with U.S and also immediately discontinued the supply to NATO troops located in Afghanistan. Notably, the strike on Saturday came one day after Gen. John Allen, the commander of the U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan, visited Pakistani army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani. In that meeting, both the commanders discussed border coordination and other measures “aimed at enhancing border control on both sides.” NATO attack shows that either Gen. John Allen lacks control over his troops based in Afghanistan or did negotiations while putting on the mask.

It is not a first time that NATO forces violated Pakistani sovereignty, earlier in April and August 2011 and fired 17 rockers were fired which landed in Angoor Adda area of South Waziristan Agency (SWA). ISAF has attacked Mehmand agency when just one day earlier Imran Kahn has staged a public meeting and an anti American rally in Peshawar capital of Khyber-Pakhtunwha province. During this rally Kahn again demanded the stoppage of drone attacks against innocent people of FATA.

Anyhow, president, prime minister and Pakistani army chief strongly condemned the current ISAF attack. The timings of ISAF’s attack also directly linked to the forthcoming Bonn conference. Apparently, it seems that there are some rogue elements in NATO forces that are not in favour of peaceful resolution of Afghan Crises. The masters of the reveled elements probably desire to prolong their stay in this region even after 2014.

They are also not in favour of Pakistani talks with the local Taliban. There could also be the reason that introducing nasty adverse security environment on Pak-Afghan border through such type of attack will help in justifying their future stay in the region. Moreover it will also assist in leveling the grounds for Americans and its allies to take the stance according to their set agenda. Attacking troops of ISAF must have thought that at the moment, Pakistan is undergoing a political anarchic era, so any kind of aggression might not be responded back.

NATO officials in Kabul said they were aware of the incident and investigating, the Associated Press reported. The governor of Pakistan’s nearby Khyber-Pakhtunwha province, Masood Kausar, condemned the strike, saying it was a violation of Pakistani sovereignty. “We will go to the highest level to investigate this incident,” Masood said.

Pakistan, which has a powerful army deployed to fight foreign sponsored militants and deter next-door enemy India, is extremely sensitive about violations of its territory. Pakistani has already scarified the lives of over 50000 civilians and 5000 uniform personals. The masses here are openly demanding from the government to disengage the country from global war on terror. Thus, such types of actions are further making them furious against American and its allies. In October, Pakistan's army Chief Ashfaq Kayani warned the US against taking unilateral action in nearby North Waziristan.

At that occasion he said that the US should focus on stabilising Afghanistan instead of pushing Pakistan to attack militant groups in the crucial border region. In short, now it’s the time that any aggression or violation of sovereignty must be responded back with full strength. Nation should display solidarity, unity and stand in shoulder to shoulder with her armed forces. Pakistan should made NATO and U.S. clear that “enough is enough” now no further attack would be acceptable in future. There must be NATO-US Joint Venture Outpost.

That’s why NATO apologized so many times. NATO must be made to pay these families and help them in any way possible including education for their children with college grants outside Pakistan and care for these soldiers’ families.

- Asian Tribune -

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