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Zardari wants drones as part of Pak Army arsenal; US says no

world Updated: May 06, 2009 09:24 IST
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Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari said he wants drones to be part of his arsenal so that he could effectively use them in the fight against terrorists in the country, but the US so far has not agreed to it.

“I need drones to be part of my arsenal. I need that facility. I need that equipment. I need that to be my police arrangement,” Zardari told the CNN in an interview on Tuesday.

Zardari said the request has already been made to the Obama Administration.

“We’re still in dialogue. They haven’t disagreed, but they haven’t agreed,” the Pak President said.

Having come to Washington to attend the tri-lateral meeting today with his Afghan and US counterparts at the White House, Zardari said drones is one of the items of his shopping list in Washington.

“I will request this from the United States to give it a thought that we own them, then we take out our targets rather than somebody else coming and do it for us,” Zardari said. His shopping list includes more arms and equipments like night googles and helicopters.

“I’m open to the fact that we need more equipment, we need more intelligence equipment, we need intelligence support ...., But not personnel. I don’t think personnel are necessary, they’ll be counterproductive,” Zardari said when asked if he would be willing to welcome US forces in Pakistan.