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US drone strike kills four in Pakistan: officials
by Staff Writers
Miranshah, Pakistan (AFP) Dec 28, 2012


US drones targeting a suspected militant compound on Friday killed four people in Pakistan's restive tribal region near the Afghan border, security officials said.

The attack took place in Gurbuz town, 65 kilometres (40 miles) southwest of Miranshah, the main town in North Waziristan tribal district, a security official said.

"The drones fired two missiles on a house believed to be a militant centre. Four militants were killed and two injured," he said.

Another official said eight missiles hit the house and the bodies were burnt beyond recognition.

"We have no information about the identity of those killed in the missile strike," the official said.

A security official in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar confirmed the toll.

Gurbuz lies at Pakistan's border with Afghanistan in a remote mountainous area which is currently facing severe winter cold, he said, adding that a number of militant groups have hideouts in the area.

Attacks by unmanned US aircraft remain contentious and are deeply unpopular in Pakistan, which says they violate its sovereignty and fan anti-US sentiment, but American officials are said to believe they are too important to give up.

A report commissioned by legal lobby group Reprieve in September estimated that between 474 to 881 civilians were among 2,562 to 3,325 people killed by drones in Pakistan between June 2004 and September 2012.

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