Pakistanis tip off militants again

Pakistanis tip off militants again

US officials believe Pakistan's insistence on seeking local tribal elders' permission before raiding the areas may have most directly contributed to the militants' flight. US officials have pushed for Pakistan to keep the location of such targets secret prior to the operations, but the Pakistanis say their troops cannot enter the lawless regions without giving the locals notice.

All officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss matters of intelligence.
The latest incidents bring to a total of four bomb-making sites that the US has shared with Pakistan only to have the terrorist suspects flee before the Pakistani military arrived much later.

The report does not bode well for attempts by both sides to mend relations and rebuild trust after the US raid on May 2 that killed Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad, a Pakistani army town only 56.32 kilometers from the capital Islamabad.

The Pakistanis believe the Americans violated their sovereignty by keeping them in the dark about the raid. American officials believe bin Laden's location proves some elements of the Pakistani army or intelligence service helped hide the al-Qaida mastermind, bolstering their argument that the raid had to be done solo.

The US officials explained yesterday how they first offered the location of the third, and then the fourth site, in order to give Pakistan another chance to prove it could be trusted to go after the militants.

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