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Twin US drone strikes kill 11 in Pak

world Updated: Mar 27, 2009 00:24 IST
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Missiles believed to have been fired by a US drone aircraft killed four people in Pakistan’s North Waziristan region on Thursday, hours after a similar strike killed seven in neighbouring South Waziristan.

The drone attacks coincided with the US State Department posting $5 million rewards for information leading to the arrest or location of two Al Qaeda allies based in Waziristan.

Two missiles struck a house near the town of Mir Ali in North Waziristan early on Thursday, killing four people, according to Pakistani intelligence officials in the area.

Hours earlier, missiles killed seven people, including four Arab militants in a strike that targeted two vehicles as they drove through the Makeen area of South Waziristan, a stronghold of Pakistani Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud.

The US State Department on Wednesday posted rewards for Mehsud and Sirajuddin Haqqani, a senior leader of the Haqqani militant faction, whose network is based in North Waziristan and the neighbouring Afghan province of Khost.

US strikes ‘justify jihad’

An expansion of America’s secret war in Pakistan to Baluchistan province would justify jihad and see many more young men rally to fight foreign forces in Afghanistan, a radical cleric said.

“America is trying to scare us but it won’t work. Rather it will be a justification,” Noor Muhammad, a well-known radical cleric who runs a madrasa, or religious school, in Quetta, said of possible US strikes.