US drone strike killed five in North Waziristan

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012 12:16:31 by

Days after PTI’s Imran Khan took out an anti-drone rally; a US drone targeted a militant compound in North Waziristan, killing at least five people.

A security official while speaking to the media said, “Several US drones flew into the area before dawn and fired four missiles on a compound, killing five militants.” The strike took place in Hurmuz area, east of Miranshah, the capital of North Waziristan tribal region.

However, the identities of those killed in the strike were not immediately clear.

The attacks by unmanned US aircraft remain contentious, they are deeply unpopular in Pakistan, which says they violate its sovereignty and fan anti-US sentiment, but American officials are said to believe they are too important to give up.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan along with thousands of Pakistanis, joined by US anti-war activists, have headed toward volatile tribal region to protest against American drone strikes despite threats from the Taliban.

The rally was the first from a mainstream politician to the tribal belt described by US officials as one of the most dangerous place on Earth.

The former cricketer rejected official warnings and led emotional supporters and dozens of Western peace activists to Tank, the last town before the semi-autonomous area. The rally passed through Tank but turned back before reaching the border with South Waziristan.

Peace campaigners from western countries also condemned the drone strikes declaring them as a breach of international law. Pakistanis call them a violation of sovereignty that breeds extremism, and politicians including Khan say the government is complicit in killing its own people.

Although it is difficult to obtain exact figures of causalities but a report commissioned by legal lobby group Reprieve estimated last month that 474 to 881 civilians were among 2,562 to 3,325 people killed by drones in Pakistan between June 2004 and September 2012.

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