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US strikes again as Pakistani protesters block NATO routes over drone strikes


November 30, 2013 - In spite of the fact that the Pakistani parliament several times has passed resolutions demanding American drone strikes end, the strikes continue. The government has done little but voice protests against the strikes in various ways. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif brought up the issue in his recent meeting with President Barack Obama but Obama simply ignored Sharif's demands. Relations seem to have improved with the US after US aid was released and when Sharif altered downward figures about casualties from drone strikes. However, the Pakistani opposition has been less quiescent with the Paksitani Tehreek-e Insaf (PTI) organizing protests against the drones for about a week now by blocking NATO supplies as they pass through the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwah (KP) province. Eighty percent of NATO supplies traverse the area...

[102987]



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US strikes again as Pakistani protesters block NATO routes over drone strikes

Allvoices

November 30, 2013



In spite of the fact that the Pakistani parliament several times has passed resolutions demanding American drone strikes end, the strikes continue. The government has done little but voice protests against the strikes in various ways. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif brought up the issue in his recent meeting with President Barack Obama but Obama simply ignored Sharif's demands. Relations seem to have improved with the US after US aid was released and when Sharif altered downward figures about casualties from drone strikes.

However, the Pakistani opposition has been less quiescent with the Paksitani Tehreek-e Insaf (PTI) organizing protests against the drones for about a week now by blocking NATO supplies as they pass through the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwah (KP) province. Eighty percent of NATO supplies traverse the area. Calls for the blockade began on Nov. 1 after leader of the Pakistan Taliban Hakimullah Mehsud was assassinated in a drone attack just before he was to enter peace talks with the Pakistani government. Another strike in the same area on a religious school caused even more anger and increased support for a blockade. The US is apparently confident that the protests are just temporary. The government does not support the protests but has not yet stopped them. Perhaps the US wants to test the reliability of the Sharif government to see if they stop the blockage of NATO routes.

Sharif can hardly be appreciative of the US continued attacks after he has done nothing to meet the popular demand that the attacks cease and also conveniently altered downward the figures of those killed in the attacks. His reward is to have to face more domestic opposition. No doubt Sharif's hesitation in moving against the protests is meant to show the US that they are playing a game that can hurt them also.

The recent US drone attack, according to one report, was in the North Waziristan tribal area in the town of Meeranshah near the border with Afghanistan. The drone fired two missiles targeting a residential compound. Reports say that the drone had been flying in the area for some time. There were no reports of casualties.

However, more recent reports claim that there were casualties.

"At least three people were killed and several others injured when a US drone targeted a house Thursday night in North Waziristan Agency. According to local sources, unmanned US spy plane fired two missiles at a house located in Chashma area of Miranshah, the tribal headquarters of North Waziristan Agency (NWA). The house was destroyed completely in the attack resulting in death of three person and leaving several others injured."

The report claims that drones continued low flights over the area after the attack causing rescuers to delay attempting to come to the aid of the wounded.



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:: Article nr. 102987 sent on 02-dec-2013 01:20 ECT

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