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Drone strike kills six in NWA; Pakistan protests

19 August, 2012

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Saturday protested against drone attacks in Shuwedar village in North Waziristan. The missiles fired from the drones killed as many as six suspected terrorists.

Seeking anonymity, a local official told our sources that the missiles were fired when people were gathering for a religious festivity on Eid.

The strike in North Waziristan against allies of Hafiz Gul Bahadur, a militant commander whose forces frequently target US and other NATO troops in neighbouring Afghanistan, comes amid speculation over whether Pakistan will launch an operation against terrorists in the tribal region.

On Thursday, the top US commander in the region, Gen James Mattis, met Pakistani army chief Gen Ashfaq Kayani.

During the meeting, the Pakistani general repeated his government's stance that it would undertake an operation in North Waziristan only if it coincides with Pakistan's interests and not in response to outside pressure, according to a military press release.

Pakistan's Foreign Ministry condemned the latest drone attack. "Pakistan has consistently maintained that these attacks are a violation of its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and are in contravention of international law," the ministry said in a statement.

Some Uzbek foreign fighters were among the dead in Saturday's strike, according to two Pakistan intelligence officials. Three people were also wounded, they said. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity.

End.

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