July 29, 2012
A US drone attack Sunday killed at least seven militants in Pakistan, officials said, days before the country’s intelligence chief visits Washington with the contentious raids likely to be discussed.
Attacks by unmanned American aircraft are deeply unpopular in Pakistan, which says they violate its sovereignty and fan anti-US sentiment, but US officials are said to believe the attacks are too important to give up.
Drone strikes are likely to be a major issue when Pakistan’s spymaster, Lieutenant General Zaheer ul-Islam, holds talks in Washington on August 1-3 with his CIA counterpart.
In Sunday’s attack, the second in the month of Ramadan, missiles struck a compound in Khushhali Turikhel village of the troubled North Waziristan tribal district, which lies on the border with Afghanistan.
“US drones fired six missiles into a militant compound. At least seven militants were killed,” a security official told AFP. “It is not immediately clear if there was an important militant killed in the attack.”
The toll might rise as militants search for colleagues buried under the rubble of the compound, the official said, adding that missiles also hit and destroyed two militant vehicles. Local intelligence officials confirmed the attack and casualties.
The United Nations & Amnesty International have both condemned U.S. drones as unlawful & said they raise serious questions about human rights violations in Somalia, Yemen, Pakistan, Libya, Afghanistan & Iraq.
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