MIRAMSHAH, Sept 8: Suspected US drones hit the house and seminary of former Taliban commander Maulvi Jalaluddin Haqqani in Dandi Derpakhel area of North Waziristan on Monday killing 23 people, including three Arab and two Azerbaijani nationals among them.

According to sources, Maulvi Jalaluddin’s eight grandchildren, wife, sister, sister-in-law and other relatives were killed. Fourteen other people were injured.

They said the Arabs killed in the attack were Hamza, Musa and Qasim.

Inter-Services Public Relations spokesman Maj Murad said there were confirmed reports of explosions in Dandi Derpakhel but their cause had not been ascertained.

It was the seventh violation of Pakistan’s territory by US forces over the past 10 days and at least 61 people have been killed in the attacks.

According to local people, seven missiles hit the spacious compound in quick succession. The compound, located about 2kms north of Miramshah, housed members of the Haqqani family.

Two spy planes were flying over the area at the time of the explosions and local people believed the missiles had been fired by the drones.

The explosions rocked the area and windowpanes of nearby houses were damaged.

The sources said that the family home, a guesthouse and a seminary owned by Maulvi Jalaluddin were destroyed. The Taliban commander’s home was in possession of his son-in-law Yahya.

They said some foreigners were living in the guesthouse.

Militants rushed to the place and pulled out bodies and the injured people from the rubble.

Some of the injured people were brought to the government hospital in Miramshah where Taliban did not allow tribesmen to enter.

Other wounded people, among them some children studying in the seminary, were taken to unspecified places.

Witnesses said the death toll could rise because search for bodies was under way till the evening.

The sources said the seminary was set up after a hospital which had functioned during the Afghan war against Russian invasion was closed down.