US drones struck Pakistan's tribal areas for the sixth time in eight days today killing at least five militants and injuring three, hours after an American Congressional delegation defended such attacks to counter militants based in the lawless region bordering Afghanistan.
The drone fired two missiles at a house in Tappi village in North Waziristan Agency where militants associated with commander Hafiz Gul Bahadur were believed to be hiding, official sources were quoted as saying by TV news channels.
The strike destroyed the house and a vehicle and the sources said the toll could rise. This was the sixth drone attack in North Waziristan in eight days.
There has been an increase in drone strikes in the wake of a suicide attack that killed seven CIA operatives in Afghanistan's Khost province, which borders North Waziristan. The recent strikes have also focussed on militant groups like the Haqqani network and the Hafiz Gul Bahadur faction that do not carry out attacks within Pakistan.
The US too has been pressuring the Pakistan government to crack down on such groups.
Today's attack came hours after Senator John McCain, who is heading a visiting US Congressional delegation, justified the drone strikes as part of measures to protect Americans from attacks by terrorists based in Pakistan.