DI KHAN: A US drone on Friday fired two missiles at a moving vehicle in South Waziristan Agency (SWA), killing at least seven suspected militants. However, local sources said nine civilians were also killed in the strike.
According to a government official, the strike took place in Sherwangai mountains of Tehsil Thairza. Another official also confirmed the death toll but did not comment on the identities of those killed. Sources said militants belonging to banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Sajna group were present in the area.
However, local people reported that the unmanned aerial vehicle also hit the house of a local tribesman, Manan Mehsud, killing nine members of his family, including three women and five children.
Those killed in the strike included Manan’s wife, two daughters and a son, his brother Halim’s wife and two daughters, and another brother Akhter Gul’s wife. Manan’s 7-year-old daughter, Zakai, was injured and shifted to District Headquarters Hospital Tank. Hospital sources said her condition was stable.
A drone strike in the SWA has come after a long hiatus. In the recent past, the US drones have mostly targeted suspected militant hideouts in North Waziristan Agency. Earlier in the week, security forces also imposed a curfew in the SWA.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 19th, 2015.
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