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Pakistan building drones, official says

Nov. 13, 2012 at 5:31 PM

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, Nov. 13 (UPI) -- Pakistan, where resentment runs deep over U.S. drone strikes within its borders, is developing its own combat drones, a Pakistani senior defense official said.

Pakistani military officials briefed some of Pakistan's closest allies about their efforts to develop unmanned combat aircraft at an arms exposition in Karachi last month, The Guardian reported Tuesday.

"The foreign delegates were quite excited by what Pakistan has achieved," said the unnamed official, reported by the British newspaper as being involved in organizing the four-day exhibition. "They were briefed about a UAV [unmanned aerial vehicle] that can be armed and has the capability to carry a weapon payload."

Although Islamabad officially objects to drone strikes by the United States within its borders, the official said Pakistan sought to demonstrate to friendly countries it can be self-sufficient in a technology revolutionizing warfare and dominated by a handful of countries, the newspaper reported.

"It does not have the efficiency and performance as good as [the] Predator," he said, referring to the United States' sophisticated drone, "but it does exist."

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