A day after Pakistan Army laid the ground rules for intelligence sharing with the U.S., CIA Director Leon Panetta arrived in the country amid reports suggesting that terrorists had got wind of information shared with Islamabad regarding bomb making activities twice in recent weeks.
According to media reports, information, including satellite images, had been passed on to Pakistani officials in mid-May by the U.S. regarding bomb-making factories in North and South Waziristan. But when the Pakistani security forces reached the two places on June 4, they found them abandoned.
Mr. Panetta is expected to have confronted the Pakistani military and intelligence establishment about this development, which comes in the backdrop of Washington keeping Islamabad out of the entire operation to get al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden because of the fear that it would compromise the highly risky exercise.
No official word was available about Mr. Panetta's visit except a one-line statement from the Inter Services Press Relations stating that he called on Chief of Army Staff Ashfaq Parvez Kayani.
On Thursday, the Corps Commanders had decided that intelligence sharing with the U.S. would be on the basis of reciprocity and complete transparency. Also, General Kayani ruled out independent operations on Pakistani soil by any intelligence agency.
Relations between the CIA and the ISI had soured since the beginning of this year and hit rock bottom with the Abbottabad operation. With cooperation being crucial to the “end game” in Afghanistan, the two countries have set up a joint task force for intelligence sharing and coordination even as the CIA continued with drone attacks which have been publicly opposed by Pakistan. However, Pakistan has been quiet about the repeated drone strikes in recent weeks.