ISI chief asks CIA to share more intelligence

Washington: Pakistan`s powerful ISI chief Lt-Gen Ahmad Shuja Pasha had a candid exchange of views with his US counterpart on a number of contentious issues including Islamabad`s demands for more intelligence sharing and the curtailing of visas to American military trainers.

Pasha made a short visit to Washington, arriving on Wednesday and leaving yesterday, to meet with Acting CIA chief Michael Morell and other intelligence officials.

The ISI chief had to face tough questions from the US officials regarding Pakistan`s cooperation in the war on terror during his meeting with Morell and his staff where they talked about a possible deal about the "rules of engagement" for the CIA officials to operate in Pakistan, according to media reports.

While officials from neither the US nor Pakistan were willing to speak on the record, those privy to the series of meetings between Pasha and Morell, said the meeting was able to address some of the concerns of both sides.

"The US officials prodded Lt Gen Pasha to take action against different militant outfits. Other topics under discussion included the issue of ongoing operations by the Pakistan military in the northern areas; the alleged presence of al-Qaeda leaders, especially al-Zawahiri, and to devise a strategy to share information," the reports said.

Pasha offered Pakistan`s cooperation but sought a "no undercovers and no unilateral strikes" understanding from the CIA, the reports said.

The ISI chief was the top Pakistan official to visit US after the killing of al-Qaeda Osama bin Laden at his hideout in garrison town of Abbottabad on May 2.

Noting that the meetings went "very well" officials from both sides said they agreed to implement on a number of confidence building measures, as the relationship between the two spy agency has had deteriorated since the Raymond David episode, a US diplomat who was arrested on murder charges early this year.

It is understood that the ISI chief raised the issue of increasing CIA activities inside his country without taking the ISI into confidence. The CIA, on the other hand, raised the issue of leaking of intelligence information being shared with Pakistan, which it argued provides escape route to the terrorists inside the country.

It is believed that the ISI chief insisted on a joint operation and sharing of prior operational information with the US, while there was no such promise from the CIA, which highlighted the significance of its highly successful drone attacks.