HomeLatest NewsPakistan is giving airspace to US drones, complains the Afghan minister

Pakistan is giving airspace to US drones, complains the Afghan minister

Pakistan is giving airspace to US drones, complains the Afghan minister

Afghanistan’s defense minister says US drones are still seen flying over Kabul.


Afghanistan’s Defense Minister Mohammad Yaqub Mujahid on Sunday accused Pakistan of giving airspace to US drones to enter his country, describing the incursion as a continuation of Washington’s “aggression”.

Mujahid’s comments came less than a month after US President Joe Biden announced the killing of al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri in a drone strike in Kabul.

US drones are still seen flying over Kabul, Mujahid said.

“Our information shows that they (US drones) are using Pakistani airspace to enter Afghanistan,” Mujahid told reporters when asked where the drones were coming from.

“We demand that Pakistan does not allow its airspace to be used against us.”

There was no immediate response to Mujahid’s comments from the Pakistani military, but it has previously denied permission to use the country’s airspace for the Zawahiri case.

Deploying these drones in Afghanistan is “still a clear attack by the Americans on Afghanistan and its airspace”, Mujahid said.

“They are doing this brazenly. We condemn this illegal act and demand that Americans stop it.”

After the radical Islamist group refused to hand over late al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden after the 9/11 attacks, the United States led an invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 that toppled the first Taliban government.

The July drone strike that killed bin Laden’s successor, Zawahiri, was the first known US attack in Afghanistan since Washington withdrew its forces from the country on August 31 last year.

Mujahid said the authorities are investigating Biden’s claim about killing Zawahiri.

“We will share the details when it is complete,” he said.

Officials have not confirmed Zawahiri’s presence in Afghanistan or acknowledged his death.

Border tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan have escalated since the Taliban seized power on August 15 last year, with Islamabad claiming the militant group has been carrying out regular attacks from the neighboring country.

The Taliban government denies harboring Pakistani militants, but Islamabad builds a fence along their 2,700-kilometer (1,600-mile) border that was built during colonial times, known as the Durand Line.

Relations between the two countries further soured when Pakistani military airstrikes in eastern Afghanistan killed and wounded dozens of people in April.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is generated automatically from a syndicated feed.)


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