Pakistan Drone Airstrike
December 11, 2011 by staff
Pakistan Drone Airstrike, The United States has vacated a Pakistani air base following a deadline given by Islamabad in the wake of anger over NATO air strikes last month that killed 24 soldiers, officials said.
Pakistan’s military said in a statement that the last flight carrying US personnel and equipment had left Shamsi air base, in the south-western province of Baluchistan, completing a process that began last week.
Islamabad’s fragile alliance with the United States crashed to new lows in the wake of the November 26 NATO air strikes that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers and which the Pakistan military called a deliberate attack.
The base was widely believed to have been used in covert CIA drone attacks against the Taliban and Al Qaeda commanders in north-west Pakistan’s tribal areas, which border Afghanistan.
“The control of the base has been taken over by the Army,” the statement from Pakistan said.
A senior security official requesting anonymity earlier told AFP: “The Americans have vacated the Shamsi air base and it has been handed over to the Pakistani security forces.”
Another official in Baluchistan confirmed that the last batch of US officials left in two flights on Sunday.
Following the November air strikes, Pakistan closed two border crossings to Afghanistan to US and NATO supplies and gave American personnel until Sunday to leave Shamsi air base.
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