Haqqani Leader Reportedly Killed In Pakistan Drone Strike
Drone missiles like this one have killed over 3,000 people (including many civilians) in Pakistan over the past ten years.Reuters

A US drone strike in the northwestern Pakistan region has killed 11 militants, a Taliban commander and security officials have said.

Officials told Reuters how the strike happened as Pakistani security forces carried out an offensive in a Taliban stronghold near the Afghan border.

A Taliban commander told the news agency that members of the Uzbek fighters and the Punjabi Taliban have been killed in the attack, where two missiles hit a house in the village of Doga Madakhel of the Datta Khel area, near the border of North Waziristan.

This latest drone attack comes after one that took place on Wednesday, when a US drone killed 15 militants, also in the North Waziristan region.

"A US drone fired two missiles targeting a militant compound in Zoi Saidgai area, killing at least 13 insurgents," a senior security official in Miranshah, the main town of North Waziristan, told AFP after the attack on Wednesday.

Pakistan continues to protest against US drone strikes, which have been targeting militants in the tribal areas of the country since 2004. The US military says that so far it has killed nearly 500 militants in drone strikes, while it has lost 26 soldiers.

North Waziristan is home to local and foreign militants suspected of attacking American and Nato troops across the border in Afghanistan. The US has previously urged Pakistan to crack down on the Taliban stronghold in the remote, mountainous North Waziristan region.

The Taliban are known to use the North Waziristan region to harbour kidnap victims, make bombs and carry out bloodthirsty public executions. They also reportedly make use of the region as a launching pad for attacks on NATO and Afghan troops across the border.

Drone strikes in Pakistan resumed in June 2014 after a break of six months; a hiatus during which the Pakistani government pursued peace talks with the Taliban. Pakistan had asked Washington to halt the strikes to enable negotiations.

On 15 June 2014, the US military launched an offensive in the region against local militants and al-Qaida, forcing more than 800,000 people to move to other towns and cities for safety. Pakistan announced an anti-Taliban offensive in North Waziristan within days of the resumption.

The long-running US drone strikes are an ongoing source of tension between Islamabad and Washington, with Pakistan's government denouncing the strikes as a violation of the country's sovereignty.

A government spokesman was not available to comment on the latest strike.