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

In China, Mixed Signals on Ebola Controls

How authorities are monitoring at-risk individuals remains unclear, including whether there are quarantines for Chinese health workers returning from West Africa More

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power 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.
Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Electionsi
X
October 31, 2014 4:10 AM
Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid