MIRAMSHAH/PESHAWAR, June 20: The death toll from Tuesday’s missile strike on a compound in North Waziristan has reached 34 as reports received on Wednesday belie claims that the place hit was a seminary.

People in the Datakhel area near the Afghan border denied that the compound in Mamerogha Seleria was used as a training facility and said flights by unidentified planes had been observed in the remote area.

“It was not a seminary. There were a tent and a few mud-houses on a hilltop where some 42 people had gathered,” said Mohammad Amir, who teaches at a seminary. He said only eight people had survived the attack.

Talking to Dawn by phone on Wednesday, Mr Amir said local people, particularly youngsters, used to visit the abandoned mountainous area in summer for recreation. “They had erected a tent on the top of the hill, which came under attack,” he said.He said that local people regularly went to the area which had chalghoza forests and also collected precious stones. Journalists were not allowed to visit the area.