American missiles slammed into suspected militant hideouts close to the Afghan border today (24th), killing 18 people according to Pakistani officials. The incident happened just a day after Pakistani government summoned an American diplomat to protest the drone strikes in the tribal areas. Fourteen people were also injured in the attack.
The strikes today were the fourth attack in the span of a week, as well as the most deadly. The drone campaign has been a source of friction between the US and Pakistan, which sees the strikes as an infringement on its sovereignty. The US maintains the campaign is vital to combating militants, including al Qaeda, which it says operates in Pakistan’s northwest tribal region near the Afghan border.
On Thursday, Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry summoned a US diplomat to protest the recent drone strikes and stated that drone strikes were unlawful, against international law and a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty.
One day later, Pakistani intelligence officials said American drone-fired missiles hit three areas in Pakistan’s North Waziristan tribal areas. The officials said each of the three compounds was hit by two missiles.