A US drone strike targeting a compound on Saturday killed at least four persons in North Waziristan near the Afghan border, security officials said.The strike took place in Degan area of North Waziristan. "US drones fired four missiles on a compound, killing four militants," a senior security official told AFP. The official said that several drones were flying in the area at the time of the attack. Another security official confirmed the strike and casualties.He said the area had been the target of US drone strikes in the past, which killed several foreign militants.The district is a stronghold of the Hafiz Gul Bahadur group, he said, adding that militants from the Afghan Taliban allied Haqqani network also operate in Degan.
Saturday's strike is the sixth of its kind in the country's northwestern region during the past two weeks. So far this year, such drone strikes have killed over 200 people in northwestern tribal regions of Pakistan.Obama-led U.S. administration has been pressuring Pakistan to start military operations in North Waziristan, but the Pakistan army showed reasons for not doing so.U.S. and the NATO forces fighting in Afghanistan believe that North Waziristan is the safe heaven for the militants who allegedly attack NATO forces in Afghanistan and then ran back to Pakistan.Pakistan, on a number of occasions, protested and showed reservations over such attacks, terming them as the violation of its sovereignty and a big reason of collateral damage. Pakistani parliament also passed a resolution against the drone strikes but U.S. considered drone strike as an effective way to eliminate militants hiding in Pakistan's northwestern hilly regions.