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U.S. drone strike kills 4 in Pakistan

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad,Sept 26, IRNA -- U.S spy aircraft continued strikes in Pakistani tribal regions and killed four persons in North Waziristan on Saturday, official sources said.

Two missiles hit a vehicle in Dattakhel area, some 25 kilometers from Miranshah, the center town of North Waziristan, they said. Two people were also injured, witnesses said.

Security sources said that local and foreign Taliban militants were traveling in the targeted vehicle. The vehicle was completely destroyed in the strike at 2 p.m.

U.S. drones regularly strike what it calls hideouts of the al-Qaeda and Taliban militants in the region.

Waziristan is the home of Taliban leaders Hakimullah Mehsood, Hafiz Gul Bahadur and Mulla Nazir, who are fighting against US and NATO forces in Afghanistan. The Haqqani network, led by Sirajuddin Haqqani, the son of former Taliban commander Jalauddin Haqqani, is also active in the region.

Since a suicide attack killed seven CIA employees in Afghanistan in December, covert US drone attacks have tremendously increased in the volatile Waziristan tribal region.

A number of high-profile militant leaders, including Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud were killed in the drone attack in August last year.

A suspected US drone strike in Miranshah in February killed Mohammed Haqqani, a cousin of Sirajuddin Haqqani.

Pakistan's military launched an offensive against Taliban in South Waziristan last October and claims to have made big gains against Taliban and al-Qaeda strongholds.

Pakistan publicly criticizes drone attacks, saying they violate its sovereignty and fuel more anti-Americanism among the people, but observers widely believe that Pakistan shares intelligence with the US on drone strikes.

Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 289756

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