July 24, 2010
At least 16 people have been killed during a US drone attack in Pakistan’s northwestern tribal belt, security officials say.
A Pakistani security official said that the drone struck a home used by militants in Dwasarak village, about 40 km west of Wana, on Saturday.
“The locals have pulled 16 bodies and some survivors from the debris of the compound that was hit by the missiles,” the officials told DPA on condition of anonymity.
Two US drones fired four missiles, another official added as two intelligence officials also confirmed the missile strikes.
Dozens more were injured in the attack and the death toll was expected to rise, reports say.
Over the past few years, hundreds of people, mostly civilians, have been killed in similar US attacks in the region.
Washington claims the strikes target militants. However, Islamabad has repeatedly condemned the attacks, saying they violate Pakistan’s sovereignty.
The issue of civilian casualties has strained relations between Islamabad and Washington with the Pakistani government repeatedly objecting to the attacks.
Despite Islamabad’s repeated protests, however, Washington continues its drone attacks on the Pakistani side of the border with Afghanistan, which has led to a strong anti-US sentiment among the Pakistanis.
Almost 1,000 people have been killed in more than 100 US drone attacks on Pakistan since August 2008.
This article was posted: Saturday, July 24, 2010 at 5:47 am