Civilian casualties from drone strikes may be inflated: Report

Published: February 26, 2012
Report cross checks casualty tally from 10 of the deadliest drone strikes in Pakistan.

Report cross checks casualty tally from 10 of the deadliest drone strikes in Pakistan.

ISLAMABAD: People of Pakistan, and many human rights organisations across the world have been flaying the US over the high death toll of civilians from their drone strikes in the tribal areas of Pakistan. However, a new report put together by the Associated Press discovers that the reported civilian casualty figure may be inflated.

The Associated Press sent its reporter to conduct an exhaustive, on the ground tally, interviewing inhabitants of 80 villages where 10 of the deadliest drone strikes had taken place.

In their interviews, they found out that at least 194 people were killed in the 10 strikes. Of these, at least 70 per cent, 138 deaths, were of militants. The rest, 56 deaths, were of either civilians or tribal police.

A research report by Bureau of Investigative Journalism for the Sunday Times and The Express Tribune in August, 2011 revealed that since 2004, when the strikes started, 291 attacks had claimed up to 2,200 credible deaths, and 1,100 injured. The strikes killed 168 children among at least 385 civilians and non-combatants.

A US government internal tally for the deaths, communicated to the Bureau, stood at 2,050, with 50 civilian deaths since 2004.

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Reader Comments (10)

  • Imran Mohammad
    Feb 26, 2012 - 4:25AM

    Yes, Associated Press report. Very credible. BTW AP also found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. :-> It is amazing how quickly ET picks up these stories.

    Ok, Indian trolls and Pakistani lackeys jump on it, your chance to feel relaxed on the weekend.


  • ex Gujju
    Feb 26, 2012 - 5:18AM

    @Imran Mohammad:
    I am in, let’s go.


  • vasan
    Feb 26, 2012 - 6:30AM

    I always wonder how these “innocent” civlians end up with the terrorists when the drones strike. Dont they turn them over to authorities or if they are complicit, are they that “innocent” at all?


  • vasan
    Feb 26, 2012 - 6:32AM

    Imran Mohammad : We Indians always relax in this website on all 7 days. Havent u noticed ?? We watch the entertainment including comedy (pak govt), violence, ghirat, beauty, romance and the rest called “Pakistan”


  • AA
    Feb 26, 2012 - 8:48AM

    So the 56 civilians who perished were not white enough to be worthy of any value?


  • Mirza
    Feb 26, 2012 - 8:51AM

    Most Pakistanis are upset that drone attacks are killing innocent people. Let Pakistan army go and clean out the areas from the terrorists. If they would not do it then someobdy else would do it. These terror networks would be attacked and wiped out no matter who does it.


  • Shakky
    Feb 26, 2012 - 10:14AM

    @Imran Mohammad:

    AP is a lot more credible than the untruthful tribals who keep screaming about fictitious civilian casualties. The only lackeys in this forum are Taliban lackeys. Seen any of those lately?


  • Ahmer Ali
    Feb 26, 2012 - 10:32AM

    Doesn’t matter how many innocent civilians are killed in drone attacks but the most important thing and objective,id est,to get more and more $$$$$$$.


  • naeem hussain
    Feb 26, 2012 - 10:56AM

    Shame on Expresstribune to produce such reports to support the agenda of the enemies of Pakistan.


  • MarkH
    Feb 26, 2012 - 1:31PM

    The fact there is support for them in much of the tribal area goes to show civilian casualties are low. It’s not something people divide on usually. Even if a few complain who are coincidentally ones that seem to be a little less than innocent, themselves, imagine the emotional reaction if it was an innocent/child you actually knew. That reaction would still be far above what gets seen from the proclaimed victims… Who weirdly walk around armed looking like militants even when they’re just protesting. Dress like one, talk like one, act like one, die like one.


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