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Drone strike in KP kills six

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Residents stand at the site of a drone attack on a seminary in Hangu district, Nov 21, 2013. — Photo by Reuters
Residents stand at the site of a drone attack on a seminary in Hangu district, Nov 21, 2013. — Photo by Reuters
Students gather at a destroyed seminary after a US drone strike in the Hangu district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, Nov 21, 2013. — Photo by AFP
Students gather at a destroyed seminary after a US drone strike in the Hangu district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, Nov 21, 2013. — Photo by AFP
Students gather at a destroyed seminary after it was struck by a US drone strike in the Hangu district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, Nov 21, 2013. — Photo by AFP
Students gather at a destroyed seminary after it was struck by a US drone strike in the Hangu district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, Nov 21, 2013. — Photo by AFP

PESHAWAR: A US drone strike in the Tal area of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's Hangu district killed at least six people, including a senior member of the Taliban-linked Haqqani network, and injured another early on Thursday.

The drone fired three missiles targeting a seminary near Tandharo village, a few yards from Tehsil Tal's main Tal bazaar, which lies within the settled areas of the province. The room targetted by the drone was destroyed in the strike leaving the remaining space of the seminary undamaged.

Tal police official Sher Zaman said six people were killed in the attack. The six include Kaleemullah, Abdul Rehman, Mufti Hamidullah Haqqani, Maulvi Ahmed Jan, Abdullah and Gul Marjan, he said.

Moreover, sources told Dawn.com that Jan is said to be a key leader associated with the Haqqani network.

Official sources said Jan, believed to be a key leader of Haqqani network, had come to visit madrassah teacher Gul Marjan.

Other sources said that Abdul Rehman, an Afghan guest at the seminary, was also said to be a key leader of the network.

A resident of the area Islam Bahadar told Dawn.com that the two were present in the area for the past three to four days and that the locals had been witnessing at least four five drones flying over the madrassah and the adjacent Afghan refugee camp.

Some sources also said that Jan or Rehman might have been the target but Mufti Hamidullah, also a key figure, might have been on the hit list.

Reuters moreover reported that a source with Afghanistan's National Directorate of Security intelligence agency in Kabul said that Jan was an adviser to Sirajuddin Haqqani, the chief of the Haqqani network.

Separately, a Pakistani intelligence source told Reuters that Sirajuddin was spotted at the targeted seminary two days earlier.

Taliban sources also confirmed Jan’s death but the Haqqani network itself was not immediately available for comment.

Mufti Naimatullah, the in-charge of the seminary, however said that those killed in the strike have been identified as Maulvi Usman, a Pakistani national, while the other four killed were Afghans.

The Afghans killed in the strike are Mufti Hamidullah Haqqani, Abdul Rehman, Qari Noor Wali and Gul Marjan, he said.

The seminary that was struck has about 200 students, out of whom 70-80 stay for the night. Ten teachers teach at the seminary.

A room near the main gate of the seminary was hit thrice — the first strike occurred at 4.42, the second after 10 minutes of the first and the third after another five minutes. It has 12 rooms in all.

The madrassah was founded in 1980 and came to be properly managed from 1990.

Naimatulalh said the madrassah had “no links to any Haqqani network”.

Pakistan condemns strike

Pakistan strongly condemned the drone strike reiterating its stance that the strikes violate the country’s “sovereignty and territorial integrity”.

Foreign Office Spokesman Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry in a statement said “there is an across the board consensus in Pakistan that these drone strikes must end”.

The spokesman said the government had been raising its concern over drone strikes with the US administration and at the United Nations.

He said the prime minister during his recent visit to the US had raised the issue with President Barack Obama and other senior US leaders.

The spokesman said it has been consistently maintained that drone strikes are counter-productive, entail loss of innocent civilian lives and have human rights and humanitarian implications. Such strikes also set dangerous precedents in the inter-state relations.

He said these strikes have a negative impact on the government’s efforts to bring peace and stability in Pakistan and in the region.

The last drone strike in the country was conducted on Nov 1 killing chief of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Hakimullah Mehsud, in the North Waziristan tribal region.

Today’s drone strike was the first by the US to occur outside Pakistan's remote tribal region, after the Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf (PTI) came to power in the province. The latest attack could increase tensions between Islamabad and Washington.

The only other drone attack in the settled areas of KP was carried out in Bannu district in Nov 2008.

Thursday’s attack comes a day after Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's Adviser on Foreign Affairs and National Security Sartaj Aziz said the US had assured Pakistan of not conducting drone strikes targeting the leaders of TTP if dialogue began between them and the Pakistani government.

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Comments (54) Closed



mehreen ali
Nov 21, 2013 08:22am

It's sad to note that the policy of backstabbing has become a fashion in politics. It's not the first time, the advisors have assured and later regretted. National dignity is at stake if a nation cannot stand by it's words.

abc
Nov 21, 2013 09:34am

This is the news which I used to looking for. US make my day today...:)

nadeem khan
Nov 21, 2013 09:55am

i think now USA has decided to expand wat on terror to pakistan settelled areas. now the govt army and people pakistan must decide and re act like a nation with wisdom and bravery.

smroofi
Nov 21, 2013 10:19am

i am feeling shame that i am the part of such country and government.

Hasan,SZ
Nov 21, 2013 10:57am

While in today's DAWN on the front page "Surcharge" Aziz says to the contrary !

Zulfiqar
Nov 21, 2013 11:20am

PTI must Act now and STOP the NATO Supply from KP. only IK can do what nobody can do in Pakistan..

Ashar
Nov 21, 2013 11:33am

See this is what America consider Pakistan. They don't have any position. Where is Musharraf? We miss you

Sameer H.
Nov 21, 2013 11:51am

This is the result of a major trust deficit between the two countries because of the Salala incident two years ago which is again going to come back and haunt us after most US forces withdraw from Afghanistan in December 2014. They accuse us of double dealing and claim they have solid proof to back their argument. Now they have ample justification of double dealing themselves.

Pervez
Nov 21, 2013 12:02pm

Coward government and coward military. I cannot call myself Pakistani. I am too ashamed.

Ajay
Nov 21, 2013 12:11pm

US said(as per Mr.Aziz) it will stop drone when the dialogue begins , but the Pak Govt never said that the talks have started . So I don't find any thing wrong in it.

Iqbal khan
Nov 21, 2013 12:09pm

Glad to know that drone strike continues,thanks US .

Raheem Uddeen
Nov 21, 2013 12:26pm

It is once again a miserable failure of our forces to defend its own citizens against foreign aggression.What a tragic state of our DEFENCE! We have failed to defend our land and aerial border through such a huge armed forces including Air Force. Being poor of the poorest nations, we still spend a huge budget for their role but they have time and again failed to deliver. Is there any accountablity? What is the crime these poor children committed? Who should be hanged for killing innocent children learning DEEN at their madrassa along with their teachers? Are we still an alive nation?

Muhammad Asif
Nov 21, 2013 12:27pm

Muhammad Asif: Indeed Sad Gov & PTI should stop NATO supply untill they guarantee that they will not attack again in Pakistan territory we strictly condemn this

Mathew
Nov 21, 2013 12:24pm

This clearly shows that US has no respect towards Pakistan.

Rao
Nov 21, 2013 12:39pm

@mehreen ali: Pakistan has to suffer these indignities until it improves economy and no more dependent on international aid.

Waqar Khan
Nov 21, 2013 12:51pm

So, now we have to wait for Imran to take actions against all of this, since it has happened in his area, and on his watch... I thought he was about to close the routes, by 11/20? Guess, it's a big slap on Pakistan's face..".see Mushi made Millions by supporting the USA....now it's our turn, we might become Millionaires"...this is what I heard the political personals are talking to themselves, at the front of their bathroom mirror.

IMM
Nov 21, 2013 12:51pm

There is a second force which is in deal with the outer world and this force not only telling lie to the nation but also to the outer world and reap their own benefits for their own pocket. Hope that foreign policy of the country should be devised and shaped by Parliament not by the second force that have been put this country on the path of destruction.

Ayaz
Nov 21, 2013 01:06pm

The problem magnifies when dealings are between the shameless at both sides.

Ayaz
Nov 21, 2013 01:18pm

@Pervez: Don't be ashamed of being a Pakistani, but only if you voted for this government. I wonder when the American public will feel ashamed of their government's belligerent crimes?

sali
Nov 21, 2013 01:53pm

When you are divided and corrupt, its an opportunity for others.

Raja Faisal Khan
Nov 21, 2013 02:25pm

Pakistan goverment is two face . May Allah give them hadiat to them

Moin
Nov 21, 2013 02:52pm

USA is openly mocking Pakistan.

Fawad
Nov 21, 2013 02:56pm

Our (great) nation and so its political leader still in limbo and not even have started thinking to decide if they want to live with luxury or live with dignity.

Please make a decision, at your earnest, what's the priority for you and then act on it.

Paki
Nov 21, 2013 03:06pm

What a shame.. U S cares a foot about pakistan..They attacked the very next day after announcing no strikes any more.. These are the state of affairs of a failed state.. I am ashamed to be a Paki..

observer
Nov 21, 2013 03:07pm

Some sources claimed that the clerics of the seminary were believed to be affiliates of the Taliban-affiliated Haqqani Network.

Has the entire FATA been handed over to the Afghan Taliban?

Fawad
Nov 21, 2013 04:00pm

Quite sad that where our nation is heading to

Shah
Nov 21, 2013 04:02pm

I feel sorry for those people who feel ashamed (in the comments) when they do not even come out on the streets of Islamabad to demonstrate agains corrupt system of governance. We had a historic chance in the elections to do something about it and even that chance was thrown away. We all knew PML-N would continue PPP's politics on drone attacks and Afghanistan. So people, you voted for them, now continue feeling sorry.

pakistani
Nov 21, 2013 04:17pm

Save Pakistan from foreign and internal trators then saving democrasy or Politics.

Kashif
Nov 21, 2013 04:53pm

It makes me laugh as just yesterday Foreign Secretary said that US assured us that no drones will happen during peace process and next day ....booom! As strongly I oppose these drones, I still wonder why we don't ask our selves what the hell this Haqqani advisor was doing on Pakistani soil along with Afghan nationals..? and people of Madrassa need to explain this? For how long we will keep on saying that it's foreign powers & we Pakistanis are innocent as babies. Many people from Pakistan come to Europe for fund raising for Madrassa, I wonder what they do with the funds, Are they really running Madrassas oR preparing Fidayeins ? Our government cannot just ignore these issues and blame all on foreign powers

Gerry D'Cunha
Nov 21, 2013 05:09pm

where is nawaz shareef's aggressive speech while in opposition accusing the ppp govt of soft approach to america on drone strike? why is he so quiet now - why isn't he taking aggressive steps to stop drone strikes in pakistan - hyprocrates!!!!!

Fawad
Nov 21, 2013 05:36pm

This (great) nation and so called political leaders are still in limbo and very sadly it seems like they don't even dare to think, except few individual, whether they want to live with luxury or dignity.

Individually think about your principles if you have and then stick and act on them.

Eddied
Nov 21, 2013 06:18pm

The USA is teaching how to negotiate with terrorists...they refuse talks?...keep attacking them repeatedly until the beg to come to table for talks...then negotiate from position of strength!...it is foolish mistake to agree to any Taliban demands before talks...

mat
Nov 21, 2013 06:46pm

Targeted operation like this appears to be the only way to eliminate terrorists and killers humanity.

ohsama
Nov 21, 2013 06:47pm

Its a good day for a peaceful Pakistanis

unbelievable
Nov 21, 2013 07:07pm

So where's the problem? Drone targeted and killed Afghan terrorist who are waging war against NATO and the elected govt of Afghanistan. The elephant in the room that Pakistani's don't want to recognize is that there would be no drone attacks if you denied Haqqani sanctuary - suggest you fix that.

Shah
Nov 21, 2013 07:41pm

This is it. CIA MUST be stopped!!! Pakistan MUST get out of this war once and for all!!!

Yesterday it was FATA, today it was Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, tomorrow it will be Peshawar, Quetta and Islamabad.

Our governement has sold us for dollars!!

Calvin
Nov 21, 2013 07:56pm

@Fawad: Why, isn't this a perfect strike without any collateral damage? Those killed are all dreaded jihadis who blow up innocent Pakistani civilians.

sudheer
Nov 21, 2013 08:38pm

Let the Pakistan Air force to scramble its fighter jets to prevent the drone attack. Shot down the drones if you are really worried about your sovereignty.

Aasim
Nov 21, 2013 09:05pm

Nobody is talking about the role of Army. Everybody knows that Army can act on their own when it is the question of sovereignty of the nation. Who in the Pak establishment can stop Pak-Army from shooting down the drones?

DMDiL
Nov 21, 2013 09:27pm

when are we getting our drones? it's been years, come on Pakistan make your own drones which be use for this instead of others using for us..they kill one bad guy along with many innocent lives. isn't it time to buy them or make your own? what happened to Pakistan's scientist? if we can make nukes we should be able to make anything else right?

adi
Nov 21, 2013 10:20pm

@Pervez: not too worry..most of you ll do

Pankaj
Nov 22, 2013 12:01am

Thank you Uncle Sam.......

Rumi
Nov 22, 2013 12:03am

@Zulfiqar: Yeah, the best action he can take is to take cover and hide - before the drones get him. that would perhaps be good riddance if one more useless, fear-mongering and hate-mongering politician is down.

pathanoo
Nov 22, 2013 12:11am

@observer: YES.

Asad
Nov 22, 2013 12:23am

It

Aftab Kenneth Wilson
Nov 22, 2013 12:56am

Again weeping for someone who was on hit list by NATO forces and also for those who were using our country to launch operations in other countries. One wonders how these terrorists entered unchecked. Sovereignty and integration can only be established when we take action. Aerial firing with blank cartridges both from our FO and rights won't work. Terrorists are terrorists whether from our country or from some other country. They only know the language of IEDs or bullets which has killed more than 50,000 innocents including forces.

sfomann
Nov 22, 2013 01:00am

This is the price we pay for bringing the corrupt leaders like PML-N to the power. I thank all those who support and voted for the Sharif gang. You have done your nation a great service.

amer ali
Nov 22, 2013 02:42am

i simply don't understand why Pakistan have given their base to strike? it is crystal clear that drone flew from Pakistan, it is impossible that they have base some where out side the Pakistan,people are dyeing but govt. is just saying it is against the sovereignty of Pakistan

Thoughtful
Nov 22, 2013 03:55am

A productive drone strike! The US should continue its efforts to cleanse the world from these enemies of humanity. Keep it up USA!

ali ahmed
Nov 22, 2013 08:56am

I may sound brutal or callous but I have an argument that why our news media gives news about drone attacks. Let US drones do their job. By making headlines of drone attacks, media gives a new lease of life to the killers, murderers, terrorists, and their direct and indirect advocates to justify terror attacks in Pakistan.

Israr Raja
Nov 22, 2013 09:00am

All killed in Hongu Drone attack were Afghanies, and I am pretty sure, they were not on visa in PK, Pakistan. This is job of Pakistani Government to send back all Afhganies living illegally here in Pakistan, otherwise we were keeping hitting by USA as well as TTP.

Ahmad
Nov 22, 2013 10:26am

If they were from Haqqani network, then why so much hue and cry on their deaths? Americans are doing the job that Pakistani army should do. If you are not setting your home right, someone else would do.

vik3ings
Nov 22, 2013 08:06pm

@Aftab Kenneth Wilson: well said, where is the out rage about the bombing in Quetta that killed 18 including women and children

Murali
Nov 23, 2013 01:03pm

@Aftab Kenneth Wilson: Rare voice of a thinking mind. if the nation is blessed with many such minds, pakistan for sure will be admired star no doubt in it.