Islamabad: Five top Taliban commanders were among several militants killed in recent US drone strikes carried out in Pakistan`s lawless Waziristan tribal region.
The US has stepped up drone attacks in Waziristan since
the December 30 suicide attack on a forward operating base in
neighbouring Khost province of Afghanistan that killed seven
Taliban commanders Shahidullah, Hafiz Nizamuddin
Storikhel, Khwarey and Mohtaj were among 20 militants killed
in a drone strike in Shaktoi area on Sunday, officials were
quoted as saying by Dawn News channel.
Azmatullah Mawiya, a key commander of the Punjab chapter
of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, was killed in a drone strike
in the same region on January 15.
The Shaktoi area, which straddles North and South
Waziristan, has been repeatedly targeted by US drones over the
past few days.
Soon after the attack on the US base in Khost, the
Pakistani Taliban had released a video showing the bomber with
their chief Hakimullah Mehsud.
The bomber said the attack was carried out to avenge the
death of slain Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud, who
was killed in a drone attack in August last year.
The recent drone strikes in Hakimullah`s stronghold had
sparked speculation that the Pakistan Taliban chief was dead.
He, however, released an audio to media persons saying he was