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Fourth U.S. drone strike within week kills five 'militants' in North Waziristan

Miranshah, Mon, 28 May 2012 ANI

Miranshah, May 28 (ANI): A U.S. drone attack early Monday killed at least five militants in a northwestern Pakistan tribal region near the Afghan border, security officials have said.

The attack took place in Hassokhel town, 25 kilometres east of Miranshah, the main town of North Waziristan, reports The Express Tribune."The U.S. drones targeting a militant compound and a vehicle fired four missiles, killing five rebels," a Pakistani security official said, adding that the compound was attacked for a second time after some 20 minutes, with U.S. drones firing four more missiles.

The official said the exact number of drones that were part of the attack was not immediately known.

"Identities of those killed in the attack are not known but the area was known for harbouring Uzbek, Arab and other foreign militants," said another security official.

Washington considers Pakistan's semi-autonomous northwestern tribal belt the main hub of Taliban and Al-Qaeda militants plotting attacks on the West and in Afghanistan.

North Waziristan is a stronghold of the Haqqani network - Afghan insurgents blamed for a series of spectacular attacks on Western targets in Kabul - and Pakistani Taliban chief Hakimullah Mehsud.

Islamabad has been resisting U.S. pressure to launch a sweeping offensive against militants in the area.

Pakistan says the missile attacks are counter-productive, violate the country's sovereignty, kill civilians and fuel anti-U.S. sentiment.

The New America Foundation think-tank in Washington says drone strikes have killed between 1,715 and 2,680 people in Pakistan in the past eight years. (ANI)

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