Washington: Pakistan has demanded a
drastic cut in number of CIA agents and special forces
personnel operating on its soil and a halt to drone strikes in
the country`s restive northwest, in signs of near collapse of
intelligence cooperation between the two nations.
The demand for scale back of its intelligence presence
in Pakistan is the immediate fallout of a row between the two
countries over the arrest of CIA officer Raymond Davis, New
York Times reported.
Strangely, the Islamabad`s clamour is not coming from
the civilian government but personally has been ordered by the
country`s powerful Army chief Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, the daily
said quoting top US and Pakistani officials.
The Pakistani demand came as its intelligence chief Lt
Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha had four hours of meeting with the CIA
Director Leon Panetta and Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff here.
The meetings were described as "productive" by a CIA
Though the spokesman Marie Harf said that the
cooperation between the two agencies remained on "solid
footing", the Pakistani General reportedly cut short his visit
abruptly to return home.
Both the US and Pakistani officials did not give any
reasons for Shuja curtailing his talks here.
Quoting Pakistani officials, NYT said that Kayani had
asked for 25-40 per cent reductions in the number of US
special operations troops in the country, most of whom are
training the Paramilitary Frontier Corps in the troubled
northwest region bordering Afghanistan, which is home to
al Qaeda and Taliban militants.
Pakistani officials say that about 335 American
personnel - CIA operatives, contractors and special forces men
- had been asked to leave Pakistan.