US Drone Strike Kills Eight Civilians in South Waziristan

Women, Children Killed in Series of Explosions Set Off by Air Strike

by Jason Ditz, April 19, 2009

Last Updated 4/19/09 7:15 PM EST

This morning, a US drone attacked an apparent militant hideout in Pakistan’s South Waziristan Agency, triggering a massive series of explosions which local residents eight civilians, including women and children, and injuring at least two others.

Reports on the attack are still not totally clear, with local police insisting first that no one was killed at all in the attack, which evidently started a fire which spread to two explosive-laden vehicles.  Militants cordoned off the area, but it does not appear that any of them were present at the time of the attack.

The attack came just one day after the local Ahmedzai Wazir tribe managed to negotiate a ceasefire across the troubled agency. The Tehreek-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and the government forces in the agency agreed to stop attacks, and certain demands of the TTP, including the removal of checkpoints, were reportedly being considered. It is unclear what impact the US attack will have on this deal.

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