Though it is only a fraction of the overall drone war against the nation, the Peshawar High Court today heard details on the impact of the US drone strikes against the North Waziristan Agency, from the tiny area’s agent.
In the past five years, 147 distinct US attacks have killed 894 people, including 35 women and 24 children. The vast majority of the other victims were local tribesmen, with only 46 foreigners among the slain, and not all of them confirmed to be militants. Well over 200 people, again overwhelmingly civilians, were wounded in the attacks.
North Waziristan is a rural area about the size of Long Island, and just one of seven tribal agencies in Pakistan’s northwest. The strikes are only a fraction of the overall US toll in Pakistan, with a large portion of the attacks also focused on South Waziristan as well as other tribal agencies.
The court expressed frustration at the data providing, noting it made no effort to distinguish between tribal militants and non-combatant civilians. This was not a deliberate omission however, as such data by and large simply doesn’t exist, with most of the victims never positively identified and forever labeled as “suspects.”
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