US drone attacks 'kill seven in Pakistan'

Strikes target compound and nearby vehicle in northwest tribal region, officials say.

    Monday's attacks were the fifth and sixth to be reported in Pakistan's tribal areas since May 2 [AFP]

    Two US drone attacks apparently targeting a compound and a nearby vehicle in northwest Pakistan's lawless area have killed at least seven people, officials said.

    Both the attacks took place in Mir Ali town, some 40km east of Miranshah, a stronghold of Taliban and al-Qaeda-linked fighters and the main town in North Waziristan tribal district along the Afghan border.

    "At least seven militants were killed in both the US drone strikes. The vehicle was completely burnt and the compound was also destroyed," a security official in Miranshah told AFP news agency on Monday.

    A second security official in Peshawar confirmed both the drone strikes and the casualties.

    It was not clear whether the drones were pursuing any "high-value target" but two intelligence officials in Miranshah said they had received reports from informers on the ground that those killed in the compound were all foreigners.

    "We don't know their exact identities but we were informed that there were foreigners inside that compound," one intelligence official told AFP.

    Monday's attacks were the fifth and sixth to be reported in Pakistan's tribal areas near the Afghan border since US commandos killed Osama bin Laden in a secret raid in the Pakistani city of Abbottabad on May 2.

    The attacks coincided with a visit by US Senator John Kerry to the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, the first visit by a senior US figure since the raid, in a bid to smooth relations strained by the commando operation.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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