ISLAMABAD, Oct 31: The Foreign Office said on Thursday that the government was convinced that drone attacks were counter-productive and it (FO) had sought details from the defence ministry about the low non-combatant casualty figure reported in Senate.
“Our position on the drone strikes is very clear. We are convinced that drone strikes are counter-productive,” Foreign Office spokesman Aizaz Chaudhry said at the weekly media briefing, a day after the defence ministry informed Senate that drones had killed 2,160 terrorists and the number of civilians killed by drones was 67.
He said the Foreign Office had sought details from the defence ministry on the casualty figure quoted in Senate.
The Foreign Office, based on data provided by the military, had in March this year informed the UN Special Rapporteur Ben Emmerson that there were 400 confirmed civilian deaths because of drones, while another 200 victims were likely non-combatants.
The spokesman said the government’s stance on drones was based on “national consensus” against the pilotless US planes to target militant targets in tribal areas.
“The government… is perusing a strategy whereby this matter is being taken up with the US bilaterally as well as being raised at the international fora,” he said.
The Foreign Office also condemned the latest drone attack which occurred early hours of Thursday in Miramshah (North Waziristan). The FO statement referred for the first time to “broad consensus” for end to drone strikes.