As expected. Adding, “It would have been better if our [Pakistani] authorities had been alerted for local action.” Perhaps the US has learned that “alerting” their Pakistani counterparts of planned strikes results in failed missions. Indeed, Rauf “escaped” from a Pakistani prison a year earlier; some have accused the Pakistani police of facilitating this escape. More on this story.
“Rashid Rauf was linked to al-Qaeda’s number two Ayman al-Zawahiri,” by Isambard Wilkinson for the Telegraph, November 24:
A British al-Qaeda suspect reportedly killed by a US missile strike in a Pakistani tribal area was linked to the group’s second-in-command, Ayman al-Zawahiri, according to officials.
Rashid Rauf and a Saudi militant called Abu Zubair al-Masri were among five killed in a missile attack in North Waziristan on Saturday.
Rauf, a British national, was alleged to have been the mastermind of an al-Qaeda plot to blow up passenger aircraft in mid-air after they left London bound for the United States.[…]
Pakistan has officially protested to the United States that missile strikes violate its sovereign territory, although some officials say there was a tacit understanding between the two militaries to allow such action.[…]
“In fact, for some time now the US has totally by-passed our [intelligence] agencies,” he [Pakistani authority] added.
A Pakistani intelligence official said that the US believed that Rauf was staying with a group connected to Zawahiri. Zawahiri is believed by American officials to operate from Pakistan’s lawless, tribal border areas.[…]
Rehman reiterated her government’s complaint that missile attacks, apparently launched from unmanned aircraft, are fanning anti- Americanism and Islamic extremism tearing at both Pakistan and Afghanistan.
“It would have been better if our authorities had been alerted for local action,” said Ms Rehman. “Drone incursions create a strong backlash.” Rauf, who is of Pakistani origin, has been on the run since last December, when he escaped from police escorting him back to jail after an extradition hearing in Pakistan’s capital, Islamabad.
Britain was seeking his extradition ostensibly as a suspect in the 2002 killing of his uncle there, but Rauf had allegedly been in contact with a group in Britain planning to smuggle liquid explosives onto trans-Atlantic flights and also with a suspected al-Qaeda mastermind of the plot in Afghanistan.