US Attack in Pakistan Kills Taliban Leaders & Others

An American drone aircraft hit a militant compound in South Waziristan on Sunday night, killing 20 people, including two important local Taliban commanders known for their attacks against American soldiers in Afghanistan, a senior government official and a local resident said.

One of the dead commanders, Eida Khan, was wanted by the Americans for his cross-border attacks from bases in Waziristan, the government official said. Another, Wahweed Ullah, worked with Arabs who were part of Al Qaeda, the local resident said.

Mr. Ullah, in his late 20s, was known as an ideologically committed fighter who specialized in attacks against Americans in Afghanistan, the resident said.

The drone launched a missile attack on a compound in the village of Manduta, close to Wana, the capital of South Waziristan, about 20 miles from the border with Afghanistan.

Mr. Khan and Mr. Ullah, as well as two brothers of Mr. Khan, were affiliated with the militant network of Jalaluddin Haqqani, a senior Taliban figure with close connections to Al Qaeda, said the official and the local resident, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the political delicacy of the matter.

The strike was part of an escalating campaign by the Bush administration to hit the Taliban and their Qaeda backers at their bases in Pakistan’s tribal areas.

via NYT: 20 Reported Dead in US Drone Attack in Pakistan

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