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Pak denies reports of joint control of US drones

world Updated: May 15, 2009 01:21 IST

Rubbishing media reports that Pakistan had been given joint control of armed American drones on its territory, Islamabad on Thursday said Washington never made such an offer to it.

"No such offer has been made (the US) or accepted by the Pakistani security forces," chief military spokesman Maj Gen Athar Abbas said.

He was replying to a question on media reports that Pakistan had been given joint control of armed American drones inside Pakistan.

An American newspaper had yesterday reported that Pakistan will be involved in armed US Predator missions against militants in its territory under a new partnership.

The US military has launched a programme of drone strikes against the Taliban and Al Qaeda in Pakistan that for the first time gives its officers significant control over routes, targets and decisions to fire weapons, the Los Angeles Times had reported.

The joint effort is aimed at getting the government in Islamabad, which has bitterly protested unilateral Predator strikes, more directly engaged in one of the most successful elements of the battle against insurgents, the paper had said quoting unnamed officials.