The Tehreek-E-Taliban Pakistan, which is engaged in a fierce battle with the Pakistan army, is likely being targeted by US drones.

 

The Tehreek-E-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), which is engaged in a fierce battle with the Pakistan army, is likely being targeted by US drones that are taking off from inside Pakistan border to take out TTP cadre who are moving in and out from the porous Af-Pak border.

As per local sources on the ground, who spoke to The Sunday Guardian, they are not sure about who was operating these drones, the Pakistan army or the US army. It is pertinent to mention that Pakistan’s drone arsenal consist of indigenously developed machines apart from a couple of which have been brought from China and Turkey. Pakistan has no US made drones under its command.  In case it is confirmed that the Pakistani soil was being used to launch US-made drones, then it will become a subject of interest for multiple countries as after leaving Afghanistan, US’s offensive capabilities in the regions had become almost zero. More importantly, it will confirm that the Pakistan government had allowed the US the use of its airspace and soil to conduct military and intelligence operations.

In October last year, it had emerged that the Biden administration was negotiating with Pakistan, seeking permission to use its airspace following its tactical “retreat” from Afghanistan in August. This revelation had come just weeks after the then Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan said he was “absolutely not” going to allow the US to use Pakistani soil as a base. However, this was strongly denied by Pakistan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which, the very next day of this revelation, said that it will never allow US to use its airspace.

The TTP, which has become the prime focus of attention of the Pakistan army, has carried out hundreds of attacks in the last one year against Pakistan army killing scores of uniformed personnel. The Pakistan army, so far, has failed to mount a strong response against them which might explain the involvement of US capabilities to augment Pakistan forces.