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Pakistan gov't approves U.S. drone strikes, newspaper says

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Washington, Oct 24 (EFE).- Officials in Pakistan have long accepted U.S. drone strikes against militants, despite their public denunciations of the attacks, The Washington Post said.

Citing what it says are CIA documents and Pakistani diplomatic cables from the period 2007-2011, the newspaper says that Islamabad not only accepted the program, but even suggested targets.

The Post points to a 2010 document referring to "network of locations associated with a joint CIA-ISI (Pakistani military intelligence) targeting effort."

The publication of the story came a day after Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif renewed his criticism of drones during a visit to Washington.

"I ... brought up the issue of drones in our meeting, emphasizing the need for an end to such strikes," Sharif told reporters after talks at the White House with President Barack Obama.

The United States long insisted that no civilians were killed in drone strikes, but officials have begun to acknowledge the deaths of innocent people in the attacks.

A recent study by the United Nations said at least 400 civilians have perished in drone strikes in Pakistan, while the Bureau of Investigative Journalism says the death toll could be as high as 926.

Some of the U.S. drone strikes could be seen as war crimes, Amnesty International said this week.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/agencia-efe/131024/pakistan-govt-approves-us-drone-strikes-newspaper-says