U.S. drone strikes kill 5 in Pakistan’s North Waziristan

MIRANSHAH, PAKISTAN (BNO NEWS) — U.S. drone strikes on Friday killed at least five suspected militants in Pakistan’s volatile tribal region, officials said.

The unmanned aircraft launched missiles at a house in the Mir Ali Khushali area of Pakistan’s North Waziristan, which is thought to belong to local tribal leader Jamal Wazir, security sources told the Express Tribune.

The air strikes killed at least five people while several others are believed to have been injured, although the exact number is uncertain. Last month, U.S. drone strikes in North and South Waziristan killed at least 42 people in six air attacks.

In the first seven months of the year, 51 U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan have killed at least 443 people, according to a report by Conflict Monitoring Center. The report showed that the two deadliest months were June and July, when 117 and 73 people were killed respectively. One of the deadliest attacks was carried out on July 11 and 12, when four air strikes killed 63 people, the report said.

Controversy has surrounded the drone strikes as local residents and officials have blamed them for killing innocent civilians and motivating young men to join the Taliban. Details about the alleged militants are usually not provided, and the U.S. government does not comment on the strikes.

The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan said in its annual report that the U.S. drone strikes were responsible for 957 extra-legal killings in 2010. Since August 2008, there have been over 250 drone attacks which have reportedly killed more than 1,500 people in North and South Waziristan alone.

Pakistan’s Afghan border, which the United States considers to be the most dangerous place on Earth, is known to be a stronghold of the Taliban-affiliated Haqqani Network, considered one of the top terrorist organizations and threats to U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

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