At least 45 suspected militants have been killed by missiles launched by US drone aircraft in Pakistan's northwest. Local intelligence officials say the attacks mark one of the largest death tolls to date in the controversial air bombing campaign.
The attacks started on Monday night, when remotely piloted drones fired nine missiles into a militant compound and at a vehicle in North Waziristan, killing 25 suspected insurgents.
Another strike hours later in South Waziristan killed five suspected militants. And a drone fired two missiles at another compound in North Waziristan on Tuesday morning. Most of the strikes have been concentrated in South and North Waziristan, the mountainous tribal regions on the Afghan border that shelter militant groups.
The United States this week said it was holding back 800 million US dollars in military aid to Pakistan in a show of displeasure over Pakistan's cutback of US military trainers, limits on visas for US personnel and other bilateral irritants. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Monday praised Pakistan as an ally, but acknowledged the relationship was not always easy.
Hilary Cliton, US Secretary of State, said, "So our decision to pause delivery on this portion of our security assistance does not signal a shift in policy, but underscores the fact that our partnership depends on cooperation. That's always been the case and it must continue to be so in the future."
Pakistan Defense Minister Chaudhry Ahmad Mukhtar has threatened the government will pull back troops from the tribal regions along the border with Afghanistan in reaction to the suspension of the nearly 800 million US dollars of military aid.
In: World News, Afghanistan, Other Middle East
Tags: Drone, Strikes kill 45 suspected, militants, largest death tolls to date in the controversial air bombing campaign.
Marked as: approved
Views: 5974 | Comments: 42 | Votes: 4 | Favorites: 0 | Shared: 0 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 3
|Liveleak on Facebook|