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Pakistanis to block NATO supply trucks
Sat, 23 Apr 2011 09:38:23 GMT
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Thousands of Pakistanis have held a protest in Pakistan's northwestern city of Peshawar to protest against the killing of civilians in the recent non-UN-sanctioned US drone attacks in Pakistan's tribal areas. (file photo)
Thousands of protesters have held a rally in northwest of Pakistan as part of plans to block trucks carrying supplies to NATO forces in the neighboring Afghanistan.

The Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf party (Justice Movement) organized a sit-in in the Peshawar city of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province to cut off the supply line of US-led troops in protest against the killing of people in the non-UN-sanctioned US drone attacks in Pakistan's tribal areas, a Press TV correspondent reported Saturday.

The protesters are moving from the capital Islamabad and Peshawar, which is the main supply route for NATO forces amid reports that NATO has suspended its supply for two days to avert a face-off with the protesters.

The demonstration comes just a day after two US drones fired six missiles at a house in Spinwam in Mir Ali subdivision of North Waziristan tribal region, killing 25 people, including women and children, according to local reports.

Meanwhile, Zahid Hussain, a provincial leader and Secretary Information of the Tehrik-e-Insaf, told Press TV that the party has finalized arrangements for the demonstrations to be continued for two days (April 23-24) against recent unauthorized US drone attacks on the tribal areas bordering Afghanistan.

The official stated that the main objective of the protest is to pressure Pakistani and US governments to put a halt to drone attacks, which have left many innocent people dead.

Public outcry is running high against the non-UN-sanctioned strikes and there are no signs that the US will stop the attacks despite Pakistan's protest.

The US conducted a record 124 drone attacks in the tribal areas of Pakistan in 2010, more than double the number of Predator strikes conducted in 2009. The assaults killed 1,184 people in 2010, compared to 2009's death toll of 760 in 53 attacks, according to Pakistan's The Nation newspaper.

On April 20, Pakistani Chief of the Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani said the US drone strikes in Pakistan are undermining his country's counter-terrorism efforts.

"Drone strikes are not only undermining our national effort against terrorism but turn public support against our efforts, which remains the key to success," Kayani complained during a meeting with Admiral Mike Mullen, the Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Washington claims the stepped-up pace of US-led aerial offensives in Pakistan's North Waziristan tribal district plays a pivotal role in eliminating Taliban militants, who are perceived to have found a safe haven in tribal belts bordering Afghanistan.

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