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U.S. Drones Said To Strike Along Border In Pakistan

New York Times
February 3, 2010

By Pir Zubair Shah


ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — In another exceptionally heavy barrage, eight American drones fired at least 17 missiles at suspected militants along the border with Afghanistan on Tuesday, Pakistani security officials and residents said.


The targets of the attacks were compounds and militants’ positions in the mountains west of Miram Shah, the capital of North Waziristan. At least 10 people were killed and the death toll could still rise significantly, residents and security officials said.


Drone attacks in the region have intensified since the Dec. 30 suicide bombing against a C.I.A. base in Khost, Afghanistan, which borders North Waziristan. More than a dozen drone strikes took place in January.


The attacks on Tuesday started when drones fired six missiles at compounds in the Daigaan area of North Waziristan, close to the border with Afghanistan. At least four people were killed.


Daigaan lies about 15 miles west of Miram Shah and is considered a stronghold of Mr. Haqqani, who runs a large part of the insurgency against American and NATO forces in Afghanistan. A security official in the region said the targets were bases and training camps used by his militants. He is also allied with Al Qaeda.


The second attack took place in Mamad Khel, another part of North Waziristan that is close to Daigaan. Residents in Miram Shah said the targets of those attacks were militants who fired on the drones. A third drone strike, in the area of Khar Qamar, then hit two vehicles on their way to the scene of the previous attacks, a security official and residents said. At least six militants were killed, they said.





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