Islamabad: At least nine militants were killed in a US drone strike in Pakistan’s North Waziristan tribal region on Saturday. According to sources, the drones targeted a house in the remote Shawal Valley’s Zoya Saidgai area, which was said to be a hideout of the Afghan Taliban, Dawn reported. The drones fired two missiles, killing at least nine militants, sources said, adding that all those killed were associated with the Afghan Taliban.
The area is generally off-limits for journalists, making it difficult to independently verify the number and identity of the dead. North Waziristan is among Pakistan’s seven tribal districts near the Afghan border which are rife with insurgents and have been strongholds of Taliban and Al Qaeda operatives, among others. The Pakistan military in June last year launched an all-out operation named “Zarb-e-Azb” against Taliban militants in the region, following which parts of the tribal agency were declared cleared of militants.