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Probe into airstrike on Pak posts underway: ISAF

Probe into airstrike on Pak posts underway: ISAF

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On
Nov 29, 2011 - 20:11

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): The International Security Assistance Force (ISAFinfo-icon) on Tuesday said an investigation into an airstrike that killed several Pakistani troops in the Mohmand tribal region was yet to be completed.

The predawn attack on Saturday killed 24 Pakistani soldiers and injured 13 others near the border has prompted Pakistaninfo-icon to boycott a key international summit on Afghanistaninfo-icon's future in Germany.

Islamabad decided not to attend next week's conference in Bonn in protest against the ISAF airstrike. The decision was taken at a Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani.

The incident dealt a major blow to the already strained relations between Islamabad and Washington. Pakistan lodged a strong protest with the US and NATOinfo-icon headquarters in Brussels over the "unprovoked" attack.

Soon after the incident, Pakistan stopped supplies to NATO-led forces through the Torkham border and gave the US a 15-day ultimatum to vacate a base in Balochistan province.

ISAF spokesman Carsten Jacobson told reporters in Kabul it was premature to say anything about how and why the incident took place until the investigation was completed.

He added the ISAF commander in Afghanistan, Gen. John Allen, who was taking a personal interest in the investigation, had called for a thorough probe.

The operation that resulted in deaths and injuries to Pakistani security forces was carried out jointly by Afghan commandos and international troops. However, the spokesman did not go into details.

Asked whether the Pakistani posts had been built on Afghan soil, Jacobson said the Durand Lineinfo-icon was not clearly defined and at times the troops did not know whether they had crossed the frontier.

He acknowledged Pakistan had closed NATO's supply line and stopped containers at the Karachi port for an indefinite period of time.

ma/mud

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