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Drone kills Haqqani aide

A suspected US drone strike killed a close aide of the commander of the Haqqani militant group in Pakistan's North Waziristan region on the Afghan border on Thursday, intelligence officials said.

world Updated: Oct 14, 2011 00:30 IST

A suspected US drone strike killed a close aide of the commander of the Haqqani militant group in Pakistan's North Waziristan region on the Afghan border on Thursday, intelligence officials said.

The strike came as US special representative Marc Grossman arrived in Islamabad to meet top officials and mend ties strained by recent US allegations that Pakistan is supporting the Haqqanis, blamed for high-profile violence in Afghanistan.

Jalil Haqqani, 33, who helped organise the Haqqanis' operations and coordinate the group's affairs, was one of four militants killed when two missiles allegedly fired by a US drone struck a house in the village of Dande Darpa Khel.

"Jalil was a highly trusted companion of Sirajuddin. He had been with the Haqqani group for a long time...," an intelligence official said, on the condition of anonymity.

US secretary of state Hillary Clinton said on Tuesday that the US remains open to a peace deal including the Haqqanis, in Afghanistan.