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Pak shuts 3 US 'intelligence fusion' cells


Pakistan has closed three US military intelligence liaison centers in Quetta and Peshawar, a US newspaper reported.

The liaison centers, also known as intelligence fusion cells, in Quetta and Peshawar are the main conduits for the United States to share satellite imagery, target data and other intelligence with Pakistani ground forces conducting operations against militants, including Taliban fighters who slip into Afghanistan.

US special operations units have relied on the three facilities, two in Peshawar and one in Quetta, to help coordinate operations on both sides of the border, senior US officials said. The U.S. units are now being withdrawn from all three sites, the officials said, and the centers are being shut down.

It wasn't immediately clear whether the steps are permanent. The closures, which have not been publicly announced, remove US advisors from the front lines of the war against militant groups.

The decision has not affected the CIA's ability to launch missiles from drone aircraft in northwest Pakistan.

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