US missiles have killed at least five alleged militants in a tribal region of Pakistan along the Afghan border – the third such attack since the US killing of Osama bin Laden, intelligence officials said.
The strike is evidence that the US is not letting up on cross-border drone strikes into Pakistan despite Pakistani officials’ complaints that the United States violated its sovereignty by killing bin Laden on its soil. Even before bin Laden’s death, the drone strikes have been the source of increasing tension in the now severely strained US-Pakistan relationship.
Two officials said two drone-fired missiles hit a vehicle in the Datta Khel area of North Waziristan, an al-Qaida and Taliban stronghold that has been subject to frequent missile attacks. Militants often use the area to cross into Afghanistan where many are involved in fighting US, Nato and Afghan forces.
The two officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak to the media.
The identities of the bodies have not been confirmed.
US Navy SEALS conducted a raid on May 2 that killed bin Laden, the leader of the al-Qaida terrorist network, in Abbottabad, Pakistan, a garrison city in north-west Pakistan.