Missile attacks kills 24 in Pakistan tribal area

PARACHINAR, Pakistan — Two separate volleys of American missiles slammed into a Taliban sanctuary close to the Afghan border Tuesday, killing at least 24 alleged insurgents in the latest such strikes since a failed car bombing in New York.

The first strike in North Waziristan involved up to 18 missiles — an unusually intense bombardment. They struck cars, homes and tents across a wide area in the Doga area, where insurgents have hideouts and training facilities, killing 14 alleged militants. Hours later, another pair of missiles hit a compound in the Gorwek area of North Waziristan, killing another 10 suspected insurgents, including the brother of a reputed Taliban commander, Maulvi Kalam.

The identities of the rest of the people killed in the attacks were not immediately known.

North Waziristan has been the target of nearly all of the about 30 American missile attacks in Pakistan this year. In recent months, it has become a haven for militants who fled a Pakistani army offensive in their previous stronghold, neighboring South Waziristan.

The two strikes Tuesday brought to four the number of such attacks since Pakistani-American Faisal Shahzad was arrested and accused of abandoning a bomb-laden SUV in Times Square. He has reportedly told investigators that he received training in Waziristan, and U.S. officials have said evidence shows that the Pakistani Taliban played a role in the plot.

Pakistani investigators, however, told McClatchy Newspapers they have been unable to find any evidence linking Shahzad with the Pakistani Taliban or other extremist groups. Investigators also have been unable to substantiate Shahzad's reported confession that he received bomb-making training in the country's wild Waziristan region.

In other news

• Traces of explosives were found on a Pakistani man who was summoned to the U.S. Embassy in Santiago because his U.S. visa had been revoked. Mohammed Saif-ur-Rehman Khan, 28, was detained after the Embassy's detectors were set off by traces of bomb-making substances, said Mario Schilling, a Chilean prosecutor's spokesman.

• Mohammad Bakhsh Abbasi, Pakistan's ambassador to Iran, was assaulted in the parking lot of a sauna in northern Tehran.

Fast facts

In other news

• Traces of explosives were found on a Pakistani man who was summoned to the U.S. Embassy in Santiago, Chile, because his U.S. visa had been revoked. Mohammed Saif-ur-Rehman Khan, 28, was detained after the embassy's detectors were set off by traces of bomb-making substances, said Mario Schilling, a Chilean prosecutor's spokesman.

• Mohammad Bakhsh Abbasi, Pakistan's ambassador to Iran, was assaulted in the parking lot of a sauna in northern Tehran.

Missile attacks kills 24 in Pakistan tribal area 05/11/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 12, 2010 12:08am]

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