US military chief to hold talks with Pakistan leaders

The US military chief made his second visit to Pakistan in less than a month for talks with President Pervez Musharraf and army top brass, officials said Tuesday.

US military chief to hold talks with Pakistan leaders
Admiral Mike Mullen arrived late Monday in Pakistan.

"There is a meeting scheduled with President Musharraf," presidential spokesman Rashid Qureshi said, but gave no further details.

Mullen, the chairman of the US joint chiefs of staff, is also holding talks with top military commanders, a senior military official said.

Musharraf -- who seized power in a military coup in 1999 and became a key US ally after the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York and Washington -- stood down as army chief in November.

The Pentagon is planning to send about 100 US military trainers to Pakistan to assist a paramilitary force that is operating along the border with Afghanistan, the New York Times reported Saturday.

The paper reported last month that US officials recently reached a "quiet understanding" with Musharraf to intensify missile strikes on "Al-Qaeda suspects" in the area, such as one last week that killed 12 people.

The new arrangements included attacks by armed Predator drones operating from a secret base inside Pakistan, rather than Afghanistan, it said.

Agencies

Last Mod: 04 Mart 2008, 16:14
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