News / Asia

US Drone Strike Kills Top Pakistani Militant

In this April, 20, 2007 photo, Pakistani militant commander Maulvi Nazir meets his associates in South Waziristan near the Afghan border.In this April, 20, 2007 photo, Pakistani militant commander Maulvi Nazir meets his associates in South Waziristan near the Afghan border.
x
In this April, 20, 2007 photo, Pakistani militant commander Maulvi Nazir meets his associates in South Waziristan near the Afghan border.
In this April, 20, 2007 photo, Pakistani militant commander Maulvi Nazir meets his associates in South Waziristan near the Afghan border.
Ayaz Gul
Intelligence officials in Pakistan say U.S. drone strikes have killed more than 14 al-Qaida-linked militants, including an important commander of the Pakistani Taliban in the country’s volatile tribal region bordering Afghanistan.

Officials say several missiles were fired before dawn on suspected militant targets in two Pakistani tribal districts, known as South and North Waziristan.  They say the deadliest strike was in the South Waziristan village of Angoor Adda, where the region's main militant commander, Mullah Nazir, and his two deputies were among those killed.

The Pakistani tribal warlord had long been accused of harboring Arab al-Qaida operatives and sending fighters for attacks on U.S.-led coalition forces across the border in Afghanistan. He was also an ally of the anti-U.S. Haqqani network of Afghan insurgents entrenched in the area.

Pakistani Warlord Maulvi Nazir

  • Was a top militant commander in South Waziristan, Pakistan
  • Also known as Mullah Nazir
  • In 2007, signed peace accord with Pakistani government
  • Favored attacking U.S.-led forces in Afghanistan
  • Reported to have had a contentious relationship with Pakistani Taliban
  • Was wounded in a November suicide bombing
  • Was an elder in the Wazir tribe
  • In May 2011, hundreds of his followers protested against killing of Osama bin Laden
 
Mullah Nazir had signed a peace deal with the Pakistani military five years ago that called for maintaining peace and keeping the Waziristan region free of anti-Pakistan insurgents. His alliance with the authorities had apparently upset local Taliban militants who have frequently launched deadly attacks on Pakistani forces. The contentious relationship was cited for a suicide attack in November that wounded Mullah Nazir and killed several of his fighters.
 
Asad Munir, a former officer of the Pakistani spy agency, the ISI, says that the killing of Mullah Nazir could provoke his fighters to join hands with domestic insurgents to intensify attacks on government and military targets in the country.
 
He added that Mullah Nazir was representing the Wazir tribe in South Waziristan and his peace deal with the army was meant to neutralize the threat from the Mehsud tribe in the region that harbored leaders of anti-government local Taliban groups.
 
Angoor Adda, South Waziristan, PakistanAngoor Adda, South Waziristan, Pakistan
x
Angoor Adda, South Waziristan, Pakistan
Angoor Adda, South Waziristan, Pakistan
“He was an enemy of U.S., there is no doubt. His people, his followers were crossing border and attacking NATO troops," said Munir. "But Pakistan army does not have the capacity to deal with Mehsud and Wazir [tribes] simultaneously. So they want to have peace with some people from the Wazir tribe so they can handle Mehsud. And the worst possibility is that the followers of Mullah Nazir will join hands with the other elements so that will be a very, very dangerous scenario for Pakistan.”
 
Pakistani officials publicly oppose U.S .drone strikes, saying they are fueling militancy in the region. Moazzam Ahmad Khan is the foreign ministry spokesman.  
 
“Our position has always been very clear and consistent that we find them (drone attacks) totally unproductive, illegal [and] against international law,” said Khan.
 
Drone attacks against suspected targets in Pakistan’s tribal territory have reportedly killed more than 3,000 people since 2004, including several hundred civilians.
 
It is difficult to independently verify the number of casualties or identify the individuals killed in the strikes because the remote tribal region is too dangerous for reporters to travel.
 
However, some military officials and residents in the tribal region have previously acknowledged that drones mostly hit militants who have terrorized the local population and rendered ineffective the state authority there.
 
The United States has rarely commented on its covert drone operation. However, President Barack Obama last year publicly acknowledged for the first time that the United States has carried out “precision” missile strikes against suspected al-Qaida targets in Pakistan.

You May Like

Could Nemtsov Threaten Putin in Death as in Life?

Dynamic and debonair opposition leader had supported liberal economic reforms, criticized Russian president's aggression in Ukraine More

Oil Smuggling Highlights Challenges in Shutting Down IS Finances

Pentagon spokesman says Islamic State 'certainly continues to get revenue from the oil industry black market' but that airstrikes have made a dent More

India Focuses on Infrastructure, Investment to Propel Economy

Government expects economy to grow at 8 to 8.5 percent in next fiscal year More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More