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2 militants in Pakistan killed in drone strike

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 1:25 PM EDT, Sat June 2, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The incident occurred in Pakistan's tribal region
  • The drone fired missiles at a motorcycle
  • The U.S. also uses drones to target militants in Yemen

(CNN) -- A suspected U.S. drone strike in Pakistan killed two militants in Pakistan's tribal region on Saturday, a local government official said.

The drone fired two missiles at a motorcycle the militants were riding, the official, Javed Marwat, told CNN.

The incident happened near the town of Wana in South Waziristan, one of the seven districts in Pakistan's tribal region. The area is thought to be a safe haven for militant groups fueling the insurgency across the border in Afghanistan.

Deadly drones and the classified conundrum

It was the 19th drone strike in Pakistan this year.

U.S. officials rarely discuss the CIA's drone program in Pakistan, though privately they have said the covert strikes are legal and an effective tactic in the fight against extremists.

The Obama administration justified its use of unmanned drones to target suspected terrorists overseas in a rare public statement recently, with John Brennan, the president's top counter-terrorism adviser, saying the strikes are conducted "in full accordance with the law."

Drone strike kills 8 in Pakistan's tribal region

The program utilizes unmanned aerial vehicles, often equipped with Hellfire missiles, to target al Qaeda operatives in remote locations overseas -- often on the territory of U.S. allies such as Pakistan and Yemen. Brennan said the United States "respects national sovereignty and international law" and is guided by the laws of war in ordering those attacks.

Journalist Aamir Iqbal contributed to this report

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