International Affairs

Pakistan military fires at NATO choppers: ISAF

KABUL: Pakistani troops fired at NATO-led helicopters operating in eastern Afghanistan, the international Security Assistance force said, adding that there was no damage or casualties. Amid mounting tensions between Islamabad and foreign forces in Afghanistan over a series of incursions, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) stressed that the helicopters had not crossed into Pakistani airspace.

‘ISAF helicopters received small-arms fire from a Pakistan military checkpoint along the border near Tanai district, Khost, September 25 while conducting routine operations in Afghanistan,’ it said in a statement. NATO has nearly 50,000 troops working in Afghanistan to help stabilise the country and defeat an insurgency led by the Taliban.

According to statement ‘ISAF forces and the Pakistani military are working together to resolve the matter.’ Pakistan Television quoted the army as saying it was looking into the NATO allegations. The Pakistani military could not immediately be reached.

After a series of recent US missile strikes on al-Qaeda-linked militants and an incursion by US soldiers into Pakistani tribal areas adjoining Afghanistan have played role in increasing tensions across the rugged and porous border.

Yesterday US drone was gunned down and according to sources Pakistan’s army is also investigating the crash of a suspected unmanned US spy plane near the Afghan border. Residents said it was shot down by tribesmen, but the military reiterated it was malfunctioned.

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Mubashar Nizam

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