Pakistan's foreign ministry says it has summoned the U.S. ambassador and lodged a strong protest against U.S. missile strikes inside Pakistani territory.
In a statement issued Wednesday, the ministry says Pakistan called for an immediate end to unmanned aircraft missile attacks, saying they are killing people and destroying property. It added that such attacks are a violation of Pakistan's sovereignty, and that they undermine public support for the government's counterterrorism efforts.
The ministry said officials emphasized these points when speaking to U.S. Ambassador Anne Patterson.
Pakistani leaders previously have denounced suspected U.S. missile strikes against al-Qaida and Taliban militant targets in the country's northwest.
Officials in Pakistan say the most recent suspected U.S. strike was on Sunday in South Waziristan, a stronghold of Pakistan's top Taliban commander, Baitullah Mehsud.
They say as many as 20 people were killed.
U.S. intelligence officials say Pakistani militants in the tribal areas have joined with al-Qaida in plotting attacks against U.S. and allied troops in neighboring Afghanistan.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP, Reuters.