A series of Pakistani military airstrikes against the nation’s tribal areas have left at least 65 people dead, and an unnknown number of others wounded. Exactly who was targeted is unclear, but Pakistani officials labeled everyone hit a “militant.”
The larger of the two salvos was against North Waziristan Agency, where they destroyed an ammunition cache and killed 50 people in the surrounding area. The other 15 were slain in strikes against the nearby Khyber Agency.
In both cases, the strikes were at sites in the agencies not far from the Afghan border, raising some speculation the move was an attempt to placate the neighboring Afghan government, which is forever blaming them for Taliban strikes in their country.
North Waziristan is primarily the home of the Haqqani Network and the Tehreek-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP), while the Khyber Agency is more commonly associated with smaller factions in recent years. Usually, major Pakistani airstrikes are followed with reports of civilian casualties in the tribal areas, though this is never admitted to by the military.
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