28 November 2011 — Stop NATO
- NATO Attack: Pakistan On The Boil
- Pakistan Buries Soldiers; U.S., NATO Flags, Obama Effigy Burned
- Pakistan To Completely Review Relations With U.S., NATO
- Pakistan: Several Thousand Protesters Surround U.S. Consulate In Karachi
- Hundreds Of NATO Containers Blocked At Crossing Points
- NATO Supply Line Has Been Cut Permanently: Interior Minister
- Government: 83 Percent Of Pakistanis Killed In Drone Strikes Innocent Civilians
- U.S. Drone Strike Kills At Least 39 In Somalia
- Putin Warns West Against Interfering In Russian Election
NATO Attack: Pakistan On The Boil
November 27, 2011
NATO attack: Pakistan on the boil
By Anita Joshua
The helicopter attack on Pakistan Army border posts in Mohmand tribal agency could further strain the already tense relations between Islamabad and Kabul that ran into rough weather in September following the assassination of Afghan High Peace Council chairman Burhanuddin Rabbani.
Islamabad on Sunday protested to the Afghan government about the use of its soil by the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) for attacking Pakistan…
Given that this attack comes in the wake of several cross-border incursions into Pakistan from Afghanistan through the summer despite heavy coalition force presence west of the Durand Line, Pakistan was up in arms and the anger was primarily directed against the U.S.
Protest marches were held in various parts of the country including near the U.S. consulate in Karachi, even as funeral prayers were offered for the 24 soldiers killed in the attack. The combined funeral prayer organised in Peshawar before the bodies were sent to their respective native places was attended by Chief of Army Staff Ashfaq Parvez Kayani and the provincial leadership.
Apprehensive of attacks, the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad issued an alert asking Americans to be vigilant. While the U.S. Embassy maintained it was not aware of any specific threat, employees have been advised to reduce non-essential travel and use ‘buddy systems’ to account for the whereabouts of colleagues. As a matter of caution, the Embassy has asked some of its personnel employed outside Islamabad to return to the federal capital.
With the closure of supply lines for NATO troops in Afghanistan, trucks were lined up at the two border crossing points of Chaman in Balochistan and Torkham in the Khyber agency. The closure is not expected to affect NATO troops drastically as attackson these trucks had forced the U.S. and its allies to shift movement of the bulk of non-military supplies through Russia, Central Asia and the Caucasus.
Pakistan Buries Soldiers; U.S., NATO Flags, Obama Effigy Burned
November 28, 2011
Pakistan buries troops as rage spreads
* Thousands of enraged Pakistanis take to streets across country, burning an effigy of Obama and setting fire to US, NATO flags
* Kayani attends troops’ funeral prayer in Peshawar
PESHAWAR: Pakistan on Sunday buried 24 troops killed in a NATO cross-border air attack that has pushed a crisis in relations between the United States and an ally it needs to fight militancy towards rupture.
Television stations showed the coffins of the soldiers draped in national flags in a prayer ceremony at the Corp Headquarters in Peshawar attended by Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Kayani. Pakistan shut down NATO supply routes into Afghanistan – used for sending in nearly half of the alliance’s land shipments – in retaliation for the worst such attack since Islamabad uneasily allied itself with Washington following the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.
About 500 members of Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) staged a protest in Mohmand tribal area, where the NATO attack took place. ‘Down with America’ and ‘Jihad is The Only Answer to America’, they yelled. In Karachi, the port city used by the US to ship supplies to troops fighting in Afghanistan, thousands gathered outside the US consulate. They shouted: ‘down with America, stay away Americans, Pakistan is ours, we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our army’, while riot police were deployed near the consulate. Outside the press club in Karachi, dozens of political activists burnt an effigy of President Obama.
In the central city of Multan, more than 300 activists loyal to the former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, as well as local traders took to the streets, burning US and NATO flags. They carried placards and banners, and shouted: ‘down with America,’ ‘down with NATO,’ ‘Yankees go back’, ‘vacate Afghanistan and Pakistan’ and ‘stop drone attacks’. Speaking at the rally, opposition lawmaker Javed Hashmi demanded that the government end its alliance in the US-led ‘war on terror’.
In Islamabad, at least 200 activists of the JI held a rally. ‘We strongly condemn the attack and the killing of our soldiers,’ local JI chief Mian Aslam told the rally, as protesters chanted ‘Pakistan is America’s graveyard.’
In Karachi, dozens of truck drivers who should have been transporting supplies to Afghanistan were idle. Taj Malli braves the threat of Taliban attacks to deliver supplies to Afghanistan so that he can support his children. But he thinks it is time to block the route permanently in protest. ‘Pakistan is more important than money. The government must stop all supplies to NATO so that they realise the importance of Pakistan,’ he said.
Pakistan is reviewing whether it will go ahead with plans to attend a major international conference in Bonn next month on the future of Afghanistan in light of the NATO attack. Around 40 troops were stationed at the outposts at the time of the attack, military sources said. ‘They without any reasons attacked on our post and killed soldiers asleep,’ said a senior Pakistani officer.
Pakistan To Completely Review Relations With U.S., NATO
November 27, 2011
Pakistan to ‘completely review’ ties with US
Pakistan says it is reviewing its relations with the US and NATO and has taken ‘urgent action’ after a NATO attack on Friday killed 24 Pakistani soldiers. A key Afghan border has been sealed and the US ordered to quit an air-base in the country.
NATO helicopters allegedly fired on a checkpoint in northwest Pakistan’s Mohmand tribal area near the Afghan border.
The decision to review relations was taken at an urgent meeting of Pakistan’s government defense committee with the participation of Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and top military and government leaders.
In a statement, officials said ‘the government will revisit and undertake a complete review of all programs, activities and co-operative arrangements with US/NATO/ISAF, including diplomatic, political, military and intelligence.’
Islamabad condemned what it called an ‘unprovoked attack’ by NATO helicopters. The statement called for ‘strong and urgent action against those responsible for this aggression.’
Pakistan has cut a key NATO supply route to Afghanistan in the wake of the strike. Islamabad has also demanded that the US Air Force abandon Shamsi military airbase in Belujistan within 15 days in an official memorandum of the defense committee headed by Pakistan’s prime minister.
Pakistani truck drivers carrying supplies to NATO troops in Afghanistan say they are now worried about militant attacks following the border closure.
Nearly 300 trucks were stranded at the country’s two Afghan border crossings on Sunday after Islamabad decided to block the coalition’s supplies. Drivers say they hardly slept all night, fearing possible attacks. Suspected militants destroyed about 150 trucks a year ago after Pakistan closed the Torkham crossing for about 10 days following a similar incident.
The 24 soldiers killed in the assault were buried on Sunday, with a prayer ceremony for the deceased at the headquarters of the regional command in Peshawar being televised. The coffins were draped in green and white Pakistani flags. Two officers were reported to be among the dead.
About 500 members of Jamaat-e-Islami – Pakistan’s most influential religious party – staged a protest, yelling ‘Down with America’ and ‘Jihad is the only answer to America’, Reuters reports. The rally took place in the Mohmand tribal area where the attack occurred.
‘They attacked our post and killed soldiers while they were asleep without any reason,’ a senior Pakistani officer told Reuters.
Around 40 troops were stationed at the outposts at the time of the attack, military sources said.
Pakistan: Several Thousand Protesters Surround U.S. Consulate In Karachi
Russian Information Agency Novosti
November 27, 2011
Pakistanis angered by US attack on border checkpoint
Several thousand Pakistanis have staged a rally near the US consulate in Karachi, a port city in the country’s south.
They were protesting against the recent attack of US helicopters on a Pakistani checkpoint on the border with Afghanistan, as a result of which 24 Pakistani servicemen were killed.
The crowd surrounded the consulate and chanted anti-US slogans.
The shelling of the checkpoint caused a tough reaction from Pakistani authorities, which have threatened to review Pakistan’s plans of cooperation with the US and NATO.
Hundreds Of NATO Containers Blocked At Crossing Points
November 28, 2011
Hundreds of NATO containers blocked at Torkham, Chaman
TORKHAM/CHAMAN: Long queues of NATO supply tankers have been formed on the Torkham and Quetta-Chaman highways as Pakistan closed the crossing points for NATO supplies after helicopter attacks in Mohmand Agency on Saturday.
According to reports, NATO supply containers entering from Punjab were stopped at Nowshera and all clearance points were sealed.
After the decision of the Cabinet Committee on Defence, all the routes for NATO supply have been closed for the supply vehicles. Owners of the containers have been directed to take them to secure points.
Hundreds of containers were also parked at the Chaman crossing point and heavy contingents of police and FC have been deployed there for security purposes.
NATO Supply Line Has Been Cut Permanently: Interior Minister
November 28, 2011
Supply line permanently stopped: Malik
ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Rehman Malik on Sunday said the Nato supply line had not been suspended but permanently stopped, making it clear that containers that had been stopped would not be allowed to cross the Pak-Afghan border.
Talking to the media here at the National Crisis Management Cell of the Ministry of Interior, he strongly condemned the Nato attack on Pakistani forces and said Nato should respect the feelings of the Pakistani nation. The minister said the nation and the government mourned the death of 26 personnel of the Pakistani security forces caused by Nato aggression on the Salala post in Mohmand Agency.
He said the decisions of the Defence Cabinet Committee (DCC) on the Nato attack would be implemented in letter and spirit. ‘The decisions of the DCC are final and will be implemented,’ the minister said. ‘The democratic government of Pakistan will not take dictation from anyone.’
Associated Press of Pakistan
November 27, 2011
NATO supply stopped permanently: Malik
ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Rehman Malik on Sunday said that the supply of NATO has not been suspended rather it has been stopped permanently. Talking to reporters here at National Crisis Management Cell of Ministry of Interior, he strongly condemned the NATO attack on Pakistani forces. ‘The NATO force should respect the feelings of the Pakistani nation.’
He said the nation and the government were aggrieved on the death of 24 officials of Pakistani security forces in the wake of NATO aggression on Salala post in Mohmand Agency. He said the decisions of the Defence Cabinet Committee (DCC) on the NATO forces attack inside Pakistan would be implemented in letter and spirit. ‘The decisions of the DCC are final and would be implemented,’ he added.
The Minister said that NATO containers which have been stopped would not be allowed to cross the Pak-Afghan border.
Malik said that the democratic government of Pakistan would not take dictation from anyone.
Government: 83 Percent Of Pakistanis Killed In Drone Strikes Innocent Civilians
South Asian News Agency
November 25, 2011
Pak terms 83 percent people killed during drone attacks in past seven years ‘innocent’
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has termed 83 percent of people killed in US drone attacks in the tribal areas of the country during the past seven years as ‘innocent’.
According to a private TV channel it is revealed from the intelligence sources that most of the drone attacks happened during the era of the present government which are over 200; meanwhile the US has carried out 285 drone attacks in Pakistan so far from 2004 to till this date.
During the current year 72 drone strikes has been carried out and from 2004 nearly 2,780 people has been killed; meanwhile the intelligence institutions in their latest research report said that only 17 percent has been killed during these attacks of those killed were terrorists belonging to al-Qaeda and Taliban.
Most of the people killed in the drone attacks were innocent and include women, children and aged people, and during the current year 46 drone attacks were carried out in North Waziristan Agency, 22 in South Waziristan Agency and two attacks were carried out in FATA and other areas of KPK.
[M]eanwhile the it has also been decided to take up the issue in the United Nations and in this regard the data is being collected and the issue would be raised in front of the UN Human Rights Council.
U.S. Drone Strike Kills At Least 39 In Somalia
Azeri Press Agency
November 27, 2011
US terror drones kill 39 more in Somalia
Baku: At least 39 people have been killed after US assassination drones launched aerial attacks on southern Somalia near the Indian Ocean coast, APA reports quoting Press TV.
Dozens of others were also injured after the remote-controlled aerial vehicles fired several missiles, Somali tribal elders told Press TV on Saturday evening.
The incident took place on the outskirts of Kismayo, a strategically important port city on the Somali coast located some 500 kilometers (310 miles) south of the country’s capital Mogadishu.
Somalia is the sixth country where the United States has used assassination drones to launch missile strikes. The US military has also used drones in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Iraq, and Yemen.
On October 28, Washington admitted to flying the terror aircraft from a base in Ethiopia.
The confirmation appeared a day after The Washington Post revealed in a report that the US flies ’armed’ drones from an airfield in Ethiopia’s southern city of Arba Minch.
Putin Warns West Against Interfering In Russian Election
Russian Information Agency Novosti
November 27, 2011
Putin warns West against interfering in Russia’s votes
-‘It would be better if they used this money to pay off their national debt and stop conducting an ineffective and costly foreign policy.’
MOSCOW: Russia’s prime minister, Vladimir Putin, has warned Western powers against meddling in Russia’s forthcoming elections after agreeing to stand for president in March 2012.
Addressing a glitzy congress of the ruling United Russia party on Sunday, Putin said any attempts by ‘foreign states’ to influence Russia’s political process would be ‘futile.’
Russia will hold a crucial parliamentary vote next week, followed by presidential elections in March next year.
‘Representatives of some foreign states’ were paying politically-active NGOs in Russia to ‘influence the course of the election campaign in our country,’ Putin said to a roar of approval and applause.
‘It would be better if they used this money to pay off their national debt and stop conducting an ineffective and costly foreign policy,’ he said in a clear reference to the debt-ridden United States.
‘It’s a wasted effort, like throwing money to the wind,’ he added.