Admiral Mike Muller, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, confirmed today that the U.S. believes the Pakistani government “sanctioned” the murder of Pakistani journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad, the National Journal reports.“It was sanctioned by the government,” Mullen told Washington reporters. “I have not seen anything to disabuse that the government knew about it.”
It is the first time a high-level U.S. official has publicly acknowledged that the Obama administration believes Pakistan had a hand in the attack on Shahzad, a well-known reporter who recently exposed ties between the country’s powerful Inter-Services Intelligence agency and Islamic militants, including Al Qaeda.
The administration’s decision to go public with intelligence about Shahzad’s death is likely to further aggravate tensions with Pakistan, which have grown steadily worse since the U.S. killed Osama bin Laden.
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