Security officials say soldiers were trying to enter South Waziristan by helicopter
Pakistani soldiers near the Afghan border. Photograph: Matiullah Achakzai/EPA
Pakistani troops opened fire on US soldiers trying to enter the country’s lawless tribal area today, according to reports, marking a dangerous further deterioration in relations between the two anti-terror allies.
Details of the incident, in South Waziristan, are unclear. According to local security officials and tribesmen, however, two US helicopters breached Pakistani airspace in the early hours but were forced to retreat when they came under fire.
The US forces were likely to have been on a hit-and-withdraw mission against suspected militants in the area, similar to the first documented US ground raid into the tribal territory earlier this month, when choppers flew in commandos. That enraged the Pakistani army and public.