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US drone strike kills at least 16 in northwestern Pakistan

A drone strike hit Pakistan's Haqqani network compound, killing at least sixteen people, including both alleged Pakistani and Afghan militants.

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Pakistani demonstrators shout anti-US slogans during a protest in Multan in January 2013, against the drone attacks in Pakistan's tribal areas. A suspected US drone strike killed seven in northwestern Pakistan on June 7, 2013. (AFP/AFP/Getty Images)

At least sixteen militants have been killed by a US drone strike on a northwestern Pakistan compound apparently used by the Al-Qaeda-linked Haqqani network, with the dead including both Afghans and Pakistanis. 

Four missiles were fired by the unmanned aircraft at a house in the Sarai Darpa Khel area of North Waziristan early Wednesday, killing at least sixteen and injuring two militants. 

Read more form GlobalPost: Obama's drone speech well received by Pakistan 

“I was sleeping on the roof of my shop as the drones were hovering in the sky," Miranshah local Qayyum Khan told the New York Times. "I woke up when I heard a huge bang. I saw smoke coming out of a house approximately at a distance of three kilometers.”

Pakistan's government does not approve of the US conducting drone strikes within its sovereign territory, and treats them as a violation of its right to self determination.

New Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif has publicly come out against drone strikes since taking office, and this latest strike is the most deadly since he came to power. 

 "The Government of Pakistan has consistently maintained that drone strikes are counter-productive, entail loss of innocent civilian lives and have human rights and humanitarian implications," the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement Wednesday, according to a CBS report. 

"These drone strikes have a negative impact on the mutual desire of both countries to forge a cordial and cooperative relationship and to ensure peace and stability in the region," the ministry added.

In late May, US President Barack Obama outlined stricter regulations on the usage of drones in a speech before the United Nations, garnering a simultaneously welcoming and wary response from Pakistani observers. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/pakistan/130703/us-drone-strike-kills-at-least-16-northwestern-pa