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The Pakistani military confirmed that a pilotless aircraft had come down but did not identify it as American. Other countries with forces in Afghanistan have not been known to operate drones over Pakistani territory...
"A surveillance unmanned aerial vehicle while flying over Pak-Afghan border yesterday night crash landed, on this side of the border ... apparently due to malfunctioning," the army said in a statement.
"The wreckage ... has been recovered."
American officials earlier denied that the United States had lost any drones: "No such thing occurred," said one.
According to earlier news reports, some tribesmen had claimed to have shot down the drone late on Tuesday but a security force officer said the aircraft had not been hit by ground fire. "The body of the plane is intact and there are no bullet holes," said the officer, who declined to be identified. He said it was a small U.S. drone. "It's American. It's theirs, no one else flies drones there," the security force officer said. An intelligence official said aircraft was about three feet (1 meter) long with a wingspan of about 5 feet. Residents of North Waziristan said people opened fire on a drone flying over the town of Mir Ali, a known militant sanctuary, on Wednesday but missed. The drone flew off.
Pakistani troops and tribesmen opened fire on two U.S. helicopters that crossed into the country from neighboring Afghanistan, intelligence officials said Monday. The U.S. denied the report.
The helicopters did not return fire and re-entered Afghan airspace without landing, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to media.
"There was no such incursion, there was no such event," said Col. Gary L. Keck, Defense Department spokesman.
Pakistan has said U.S. missile attacks and one U.S. ground assault are a violation of its sovereignty and the army has vowed to defend Pakistani territory.
The U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan said one of its drones, which can be equipped with video surveillance equipment, went down Tuesday in the Afghan province bordering Waziristan. But it said coalition forces retrieved it and that no others were missing. The CIA also operates drones in the region.
"Just as we will not let Pakistan's territory to be used by terrorists for attacks against our people and our neighbors, we cannot allow our territory and our sovereignty to be violated by our friends," Zardari said. "Unilateral actions of great powers should not inflame the passions of allies," he said.