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Anjum Naveed, File, Associated Press
FILE - In this Saturday, June 11, 2011 file photo, Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, right, talks to Afghan President Hamid Karzai, unseen, with Pakistan's army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, second right, and Pakistan's intelligence Chief Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, left, during an inaugural meeting of joint peace commission at Prime Minister House in Islamabad, Pakistan. Pakistan's military warned Wednesday of "grievous consequences" for the country after the prime minister accused the army chief of violating the constitution, adding to a sense of crisis that some believe could end in the ouster of government.

WASHINGTON — The Pentagon says it hasn't sought or received assurances from the Pakistani army that the army won't stage a coup.

The civilian and military leadership in Pakistan are in near-open conflict.

A Pentagon spokesman, Navy Capt. John Kirby, tells reporters that in the Pentagon's view, the crisis is a matter for Pakistan to resolve.

It's also a matter of great concern in light of Pakistan's status as a nuclear power and the risk that its arsenal, which is said to be well protected, could fall into the wrong hands in the event of a civil conflict.

The internal conflict adds yet another layer of complication and peril to the U.S.-Pakistani relationship. The Obama administration insists Pakistan is key to defeating the threat posed by al-Qaida and other terrorist groups.