Drone attacks pound northern Pakistan, killing 13 in two days

MIRANSHAH, Pakistan Sun Aug 19, 2012 10:59am EDT

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MIRANSHAH, Pakistan (Reuters) - A flurry of drone attacks pounded northern Pakistan at the weekend, killing 13 people in three separate attacks, officials and witnesses said on Sunday.

The attacks came as Pakistanis celebrate the end of the holy month of Ramadan with the festival of Eid al-Fitr.

A drone killed five people and injured two in North Waziristan early on Sunday morning, an intelligence official said. He said the death toll was based on intercepted conversations between the militants.

Later on Sunday, another drone attack killed two people and injured two others near the site of the previous attack, said two intelligence officials.

On Saturday, a drone attack killed six people and injured two. The dead were local Taliban and fighters from the southern province of Punjab, said security officials and a tribal source.

Drone strikes are controversial in Pakistan, where many politicians condemn them as a violation of sovereignty. But the United States sees them as a key tool in the fight against terrorism.

(Reporting By Haji Mujtaba; Editing by Ed Lane)

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