168 children killed in drone strikes in Pakistan since start of campaign As many as 168 children have been killed in drone strikes in Pakistan during the past seven years as the CIA has intensified its secret programme against militants along the Afghan border. In an extensive analysis of open-source documents, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism found that 2,292 people had been killed by US missiles, including as many as 775 civilians.

168 children killed in drone strikes in Pakistan since start of campaign

As many as 168 children have been killed in drone strikes in Pakistan during the past seven years as the CIA has intensified its secret programme against militants along the Afghan border.

A boy stands at the site of suspected U.S. drone attacks in the Janikhel tribal area in Bannu district of North West Frontier Province in Pakistan, November 19, 2008

A boy stands at the site of suspected U.S. drone attacks in the Janikhel tribal area in Bannu district of North West Frontier Province in Pakistan, November 19, 2008 Photo: REUTERS
Rob Crilly

By , Islamabad

5:37PM BST 11 Aug 2011

In an extensive analysis of open-source documents, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism found that 2,292 people had been killed by US missiles, including as many as 775 civilians.

The strikes, which began under President George W Bush but have since accelerated during the presidency of Barack Obama, are hated inPakistan, where families live in fear of the bright specks that appear to hover in the sky overhead.

In just a single attack on a madrassah in 2006 up to 69 children lost their lives.

Chris Woods, who led the research, said the detailed database of deaths would send shockwaves through Pakistan, where political and military leaders repeatedly denounce the strikes in public, while privately allowing the US to continue.

“This is a military campaign run by a secret service which raised problems of accountability, transparency and you have a situation where neither the Pakistanis nor Americans are clear about any agreements in place and where the reporting is difficult,” he said.

“All of this means that when things go wrong there is simply no redress for the families of those who have been mistakenly killed.”

The research, culled from more than 2,000 news reports, leaked documents and witness statements, show how the drones gradually moved from a rarely used tool, beginning with a single strike in 2004, to a frontline weapon of war.

Notable successes include the death of Baitullah Mehsud, head of the Pakistan Taliban, in 2009. Ilyas Kashmiri, a senior al-Qaeda figure viewed as a possible successor to Osama bin Laden, is believed to have died in a drone strike in June.

However, under President Obama the strikes have been used to target low-level foot soldiers as well as senior commanders.

Today the attacks are running at a rate of one every four days, mostly centred on North Waziristan from where members of the Haqqani network launch cross-border attacks on international forces in eastern Afghanistan.

With Pakistan so far unwilling to bow to US pressure to launch a military offensive against the bases and with Islamabad ruling out any suggestion that American troops be deployed, that leaves the CIA’s drones, said Imtiaz Gul, an analyst who has written extensively on the region.

At the same time, he added, they mean a president elected on a manifesto promising to close Guantanamo Bay does not have hundreds more detainees to process.

“As long as these peoples sit in jails they remain a problem, a living liability, so there seems to be a drive to kill them,” said Mr Gul.

Human rights campaigners have long argued that drones represent extra-judicial killings.

Sam Zarifi, Asia-Pacific director of Amnesty International, said: “The Obama administration must explain the legal basis for drone strikes in Pakistan to avoid the perception that it acts with impunity.

“The Pakistan government must also ensure accountability for indiscriminate killing, in violation of international law, that occurs inside Pakistan.” The US refuses to acknowledge the existence of its drones programme.

A spokesman for the US embassy in Islamabad declined to comment.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/pakistan/8695679/168-children-killed-in-drone-strikes-in-Pakistan-since-start-of-campaign.html#

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About ottwf

The capitalistic and imperialistic system and its systematic aims: profit and power over others, still dominates our world and not the aims of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as 1948 agreed! After the world-economic-crisis after 1929 and the following World-War the world hat decided with agreeing the Universal Declaration of Human rights, to create a new world order; conflicts should be solved with peaceful means, not nations and their power, but the dignity of human beings around the world should be the aim of the policies and the economy, of every state and the community of states. But soon after the end of the war, when the victims and destruction were forgotten, all continued as before, with all risks, we had seen before. The split in rich an poor is getting bigger and bigger. We also overuse our global environment already, even if the big majority of mankind still lives in poverty! We are not victims, this world is men-made and be changed from men and women! It will be possible, if those, who do not want or serve (because of system-pressure) profits first, but want for themselves and everybody a life in human dignity unite and develop in a global base-democratic movement a common vision for our world, and learn, how to make this vision real. We need for it a big empowerment of many, many common men and women and their activities. Our chances are because of new communication technologies, of common languages, of the level of education and the mixture of people from different backgrounds better then ever. The occupy-movement is a good start for such a global movement. We support it and try to contribute to its success! We choose news and make comments and so try to unite people for an Occupy-Think-Tank: Its tasks: creating a news-network, self-education, working on global-reform programs and learning to organize projects for those, who are suffering. Join us, so that we can build teams for these aims for all subjects and countries as a base for the unification. We have Wan(n)Fried(en) in our name, because it means When peace and it is a modification of the name of the town our base is, in Wanfried, a small town in the middle of Germany, where we can use a former factory for our activities. Our telefon: 0049-5655-924981, mobil: 0171-9132149, email: occupy-think-tank@gmx.de
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