Pak. official admits 80% drone victims are terrorists

Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani on Friday admitted that 80 per cent of the estimated 3,000 people killed in the country in drone attacks were terrorists. This runs contrary to the mainstream narrative that puts the number of innocents killed at a higher percentage.

In a briefing to the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, Mr. Jilani reiterated Pakistan’s position that drone attacks are not only counter-productive but also a violation of sovereignty and international law. But he maintained that the country cannot afford to shoot them down. “We cannot bear the fallout of shooting down drones,” he said, stressing the need for a comprehensive policy to expel the foreign fighters having base in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas.


Mr. Jilani’s admission came on a day when the drones visited the Bobar Ghar area along the border of North and South Waziristan. Two missiles were fired on a compound of the Tehreek-e-Taliban and, according to reports from the tribal areas, eight terrorists were killed in these strikes. Officials claimed the dead included two foreign fighters of the al-Qaeda, Abu Majid Al-Iraqi and Shiekh Waqas Al-Yamoni.

Drone attacks are termed a major irritant in relations between Pakistan and the U.S. though there are strong indications that the unmanned Predators target terrorist hideouts in the tribal areas with the tacit support of the Pakistani civil and military leadership. However, both sides steer clear of providing details.

Though Pakistan has earlier protested the attacks, this has stopped of late with Foreign Office officials stating that the matter was being discussed with the U.S. but outside the public domain.

A letter from the Editor

Dear reader,

We have been keeping you up-to-date with information on the developments in India and the world that have a bearing on our health and wellbeing, our lives and livelihoods, during these difficult times. To enable wide dissemination of news that is in public interest, we have increased the number of articles that can be read free, and extended free trial periods. However, we have a request for those who can afford to subscribe: please do. As we fight disinformation and misinformation, and keep apace with the happenings, we need to commit greater resources to news gathering operations. We promise to deliver quality journalism that stays away from vested interest and political propaganda.

Support Quality Journalism
Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | May 30, 2020 5:26:51 PM |

Next Story