US envoy summoned

WEB DESK: Pakistan on Monday summoned US Ambassador David Hale to express its concern over a drone strike on the Pakistani territory in which Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour was reportedly killed.

“The Ambassador of the United States David Hale was called in today by the Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Syed Tariq Fatemi, to express concern over the drone strike on Pakistani territory on Saturday, 21 May 2016,” said a Foreign Office statement.

In the meeting, Tariq Fatemi pointed out that the drone strike was a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty and a breach of the United Nations’ Charter that guarantees the inviolability of the territorial integrity of its member states, the statement added.

Mullah Akhtar Mansour, the top Afghan Taliban leader, was reportedly killed in the latest US drone strike in Balochistan’s Dalbandin area but there was no word in the statement to confirm his death officially.

However, the statement added that Tariq Fatemi also emphasised that such actions could adversely impact the ongoing efforts by the Quadrilateral Co-ordination Group (QCG) for facilitating peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban.

“The Special Assistant to the Prime Minister also underlined that Pakistan and the United States had been closely co-ordinating in the fight against the menace of terrorism and that this cooperation is needed to be maintained,” it added.

In a separate statement on Sunday, the Foreign Office stated that the US shared information with Prime Minister and Army Chief that a drone strike was carried out in Pakistan near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border area, in which reportedly the Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour was targeted.

However, according to the statement, investigations were being carried out on the basis of information gathered so far to identify a person namely Wali Muhammad s/o Shah Muhammad carrying a Pakistani passport and an I.D. Card, resident of Qilla Abdullah, who entered Pakistan from Taftan border on 21st May and was killed in the attack. -Business Recorder