The government will pay compensation to the families of 39 people who died in a US drone strike last week, an official said on Saturday.
Civilians and police were among those killed when missiles hit a compound in Datta Khel in North Waziristan on March 17. In protest, Pakistan refused to participate in a trilateral meeting with US and Afghan officials and belligerent condemnation came from the prime minister and the army chief.
Tribal administration official Asghar Khan said that a compensation package was ready for the victims’ families. “Each of the families will be paid Rs300,000, while Rs100,000 will be paid to each of the six injured,” Khan said, adding that payments would commence from Monday.
Compensation is paid to police and civilians who are killed in bomb blasts or terror attacks but this is the first time that compensation has been announced to US drone attack victims even though hundreds have reportedly died in the attacks that increased steeply when US President Barack Obama took office.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 27th, 2011.