Pakistan Army denies U.S. drone strikes in its territory

Pakistan Army denies U.S. drone strikes in its territory

Two alleged drone strikes of the United States military, Tuesday (10/17/2017), have killed 11 people in Pakistan-Afghanistan border following a strike the day before which killed 20 people of the total of 31 death toll over two days.

These strikes comes less than a week after the release of Canadian hostage Joshua Boyle and his American wife and three children on October 11 in Pakistan after five years of captivity at the hands of the Haqqani network.

26 Taliban-allied Haqqani network militants were killed in a U.S. drone attack on a compound used by the network in Pakistan's Kurram district. "Twenty people were killed yesterday, mostly from the Afghan Taliban, and 11 more were killed in today's attacks", Wazir said.

He also said that the drone strikes in Pak-Afghan border are not in the Pakistani territories, adding that border between Pakistan and Afghanistan are not well defined.

The death toll from a US drone attack on a compound used by the Taliban-allied Haqqani network has risen to 26, officials said Tuesday, less than a week after a US-Canadian family held captive by the militants was rescued.

Witnesses said they heard the drones and saw thick smoke before seeing 20 emergency coffins coming out of the area.

While AFP reported that the Monday strikes occurred in Pakistan's Kurram Agency, the local political administration said that the strikes in fact targeted militants in the Shpola area of Afghanistan's Paktia province. Local sources said drones have been hovering around the area since Monday.

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The army had hailed the recovery of the abductees as an example of what can be expected from close cooperation between the USA and Pakistan in targeting militant outfits.

It is as yet unclear what impact, if any, the drone strikes will have on the push to revive amicable relations with the US.

Pakistan has routinely denied drone strikes on its soil in the past.

"Pakistan Army is capable of taking effective measure if actionable intelligence is shared", he had said. The reports quoted local officials in Pakistan's northwestern Kurram Agency that last night's strike was located in the agency in Pakistan.

During last 24 hours, a number of Air engagements have taken place in those areas inside Afghanistan with reports of heavy losses to terrorists, the statement further said. As a follow up of Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa's visit to Afghanistan, coordination between the forces has enhanced.

"A better security coordination will take both countries towards enduring peace and stability defeating the common enemy", the statement read.

The commander of the banned militant group hails from Mohmand Agency-one of the seven agencies in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA)-and goes by the alias Abdul Wali. Pakistan had proscribed JuA in 2016.

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