ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan government Friday repeated its view that US drone strikes in its territory were illegal, after President Barack Obama laid out new guidelines for their use.

The US president mounted a firm defence of his covert drone war as legal and just in a major speech on counter-terrorism policy on Thursday but warned that undisciplined use of the tactic would invite abuses of power.

Islamabad said it welcomed some aspects of Obama’s address, particularly his acknowledgement that “force alone cannot make us safe”, but it remained firm on its long-held public stance on unmanned missile attacks in its tribal northwest.

“The Government of Pakistan has consistently maintained that the drone strikes are counter-productive, entail loss of innocent civilian lives, have human rights and humanitarian implications and violate the principles of national sovereignty, territorial integrity and international law,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.

Obama said he had approved new guidelines stating that drone strikes can only be used to prevent imminent attacks and when the capture of a suspect is not feasible and if there is a “near certainty” that civilians will not be killed.

According to Britain’s Bureau of Investigative Journalism, CIA drone attacks in Pakistan have killed up to 3,587 people since 2004, up to 884 of them civilians.

More From This Section

Journalist Hamid Mir injured in gun attack in Karachi

The incident took place on Sharae Faisal near Natha Khan area when the gunmen opened fire on his vehicle around 5:30pm

At least 14 killed in Sukkur road accident

At least 14 people were killed when a trawler and a bus collided on the National Highway near Sukkur.

Musharraf lands in Karachi amid tight security

The port city has been on high alert with roads being cordoned off for the former president's security.

Three militants killed in Balochistan‏ violence

Three militants were killed after an attack on a FC patrol in Balochistan's Panjgoor district, an official said.


Comments are closed.

Comments (2)

Sameer
May 24, 2013 10:09 pm

correction! 885 children, not just civilians.

Ejaz Ahmad Perdesi
May 24, 2013 11:41 pm

George Bush, Barrack Obama & Franklin Roosevelt must be tried for 'crime against humanity'.

Explore: Indian elections 2014
Explore: Indian elections 2014
How much do you know about Indian Elections?
How much do you know about Indian Elections?
Poll
From The Newspaper
Tweets