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U.S. resumes drone attacks in Pakistan

Anita Joshua

ISLAMABAD: Maintaining its pressure on Pakistan to do more in North Waziristan, the U.S. on Monday launched another set of drone attacks in the Mir Ali area of the tribal agency reportedly killing at least 15 terrorists.

After a lull of 10 days, the unmanned Predators entered Pakistani airspace to bomb suspected terrorist hideouts in this agency known to be the stronghold of the Haqqani network. Monday's attacks come in the wake of two successive terrorist strikes in as many days in Mohmand and Bajaur tribal agencies which have left nearly a 100 dead and twice the number injured.

The U.S. is of the view that clearing this area of terrorists is crucial for success in its ongoing war on terror in Afghanistan. And, as the U. S. designated date for start of troop withdrawal from Afghanistan in July 2011 draws nigh, Pakistani authorities are anticipating an increase in pressure from Washington to do more.

Meanwhile, amid reports of helicopters of the U.S.-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan entering Pakistani airspace in the Torkham area, the American Embassy here clarified that this was not the case. While denying these reports, it also sought to underline the fact that all coalition and U.S. air operations in Afghanistan along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border region are closely coordinated with Pakistan's Air Force.

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