Pakistani officials report that a barrage of mortars was fired from across the Afghan border, likely from either NATO troops or Afghan military forces, and destroyed a home in the North Waziristan Agency, killing eight people.
The attack comes just a day after Vice President Joe Biden’s visit to Pakistan, during which he warned that his patience was “wearing thin” with the government for not having invaded North Waziristan yet. NATO has yet to confirm that it was their attack, but promised an investigation.
As with the mystery of who launched the attack, the identities of the victims are unclear as well, with Pakistani officials describing them only as five men and three women and reporting no indications of any militant connections, beyond living in a tribal area that the US wants attacked for being a militant hotbed.
The CIA regularly launches attacks against North Waziristan with unmanned drones, but NATO has only rarely crossed the border into Pakistan with attacks of their own. Mortar fire across the border then would be an extremely provocative action, even though drone attacks killing similar numbers of random tribesmen are so routine they barely spark a mention in Pakistan’s media.