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ASIA: 14 dead in suspected US missile strike in Pakistan

07 Nov 2008 11:17 PM
By Rana Jawad

ISLAMABAD, Nov 7 AFP - Up to 14 militants were killed today when a suspected US missile strike destroyed an al-Qaeda training camp in a tribal area ofnorthwest Pakistan near the Afghan border, officials said.

Four missiles are thought to have been fired at the camp, in Kumsham village, some 35km south of Miranshah in North Waziristan province.

Security sources said the village is dominated by Wazir tribes and is near the border with South Waziristan, another hub of Taliban and al-Qaeda operatives.

"Between 11 to 14 militants, mainly foreigners, were killed in the strike,"a senior military official told AFP on condition of anonymity, using the Pakistani term to describe al-Qaeda extremists.

Local official Attiq-ur Rehman also confirmed the strike but gave a different death toll.

"There was a missile strike in the Kumsham village and it destroyed a compound, 13 people were killed," he said.

It was not immediately clear if there were any high-value targets among those killed, but sources said seven al-Qaeda operatives and a local Taliban commander were among the dead.

An intelligence official, also speaking on condition of anonymity, added: "The strike successfully destroyed the camp."

"The militants were using the facility for training," another said.

AFP ht=0A