MIRAMSHAH/ DI KHAN:
At least nine suspected militants were killed when US drones targeted a vehicle at 7 pm on Tuesday in the Sheen Khwar area on the outskirts of Humzonee village, around four kilometres from Miramshah, the headquarters of North Waziristan Agency, on Tuesday, a security official said.
The official told The Express Tribune that four missiles were fired on the vehicle. He added that it could not be ascertained whether any senior insurgents were among the dead.
“The militants were leaving a house for an undisclosed location when they were attacked by the drones,” the official said.
A local tribesman said that he was on the way to his house when two drones launched four missiles on the militants’ vehicle, adding that the militants were from the group of Hafiz Gul Bahadur, an influential commander who is believed to be hosting the Haqqani network, the deadliest of all Afghan Taliban groups.
Another official in Miramshah said a compound near the vehicle was also damaged in the strike. “One of the missiles also hit a nearby compound which was badly damaged after catching fire,” he said.
Earlier on Sunday, at least six militants were killed when US drones fired missiles twice in North Waziristan.
Humzonee village is inhibited by the Dawar tribe and is located close to the Miramshah market.
There has been a dramatic increase in US drone strikes in Pakistan since May, this year.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 23rd, 2012.