Wednesday, April 17, 2013
US drone destroys 'Taliban base' in Pakistan
A US drone has fired two missiles into a Taliban training camp in Pakistan, destroying the compound and killing at least five people, local officials have said. Wednesday's strike took place in the Baber Ghar area of the South Waziristan tribal district on the Afghan border, a stronghold of Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud where the faction runs several camps. One local security official, however, said the five killed were suspected al-Qaeda fighters. "The target was a base of Pakistani Taliban. Five militants have been killed and two injured," the official told AFP news agency. Another official in Wana, the main town in South Waziristan, confirmed the attack and told AFP the drone targeted a base of Tehreek-e-Taliban, Pakistan's umbrella Taliban faction. Pakistan repeatedly denounces US drone strikes, criticising them as a violation of sovereignty that inflame anti-Americanism despite leaked US diplomatic cables that showed leaders allegedly agreed to them in private. UN special rapporteur on counter-terrorism and human rights envoy Ben Emmerson, who visited Islamabad last month as part of an investigation into civilian casualties caused by drone strikes, said the US drone attacks violated Pakistan's sovereignty. According to Britain's Bureau of Investigative Journalism, CIA drone attacks in Pakistan have killed up to 3,587 people since 2004, up to 884 of them civilians.