UN criticism unlikely to stop CIA drone strikes in Pak

Written by: Anita Nair
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Washington, Dec 10 (ANI): Despite new criticism from a UN human rights expert against CIA drone attacks, the United States government's covert program using unmanned aerial vehicles to strike at terrorists inside Pakistan is unlikely to stop or be changed.

US officials insist that the CIA drone program has been an effective tool to take out insurgents along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, particularly those hidden beyond the reach of the military, The News reported.

The stepped-up use of drones over the past year has shown no signs of slowing down, and was credited this week with the killing of al-Qaida's third in command inside Pakistan. The terrorist organisation acknowledged the death of Mustafa al-Yazid.

Although the Obama administration does not acknowledge the secret program, but a senior US official defended its use on Wednesday, saying that a careful and rigorous targeting process is used to avoid civilian casualties.

The official, who is familiar with the operation, spoke on the condition of anonymity because the program is classified.

The drone attacks, which have killed hundreds of insurgents in dozens of strikes during the past year, have been condemned by critics who say that it may constitute illegal assassinations and violate international law. (ANI)

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