AWAR - At least 35 people were killed, including foreigners and nine others injured when a suspected pilotless US aircraft fired two missiles at a house in South Waziristan Agency on Saturday.
It has been reported that 25 Uzbeks were among the killed persons.
The US drone fired two guided missiles at a suspected Taliban's hideout in Malak Khel area of Ladha. The raid destroyed the targeted house, a stronghold of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) chief Baitullah Mehsud. The targeted house belonged to a local resident known as Malik Rosan. The attack occurred around 9:30am.
Soon after the incident, the house caught fire. Taliban sealed off the site of the attack, preventing people from entering there, said the residents.
However, locals were witnessed busy pulling out the dead bodies, buried under the rubble. The injured were rushed to a local hospital.
It was said that the killed Uzbeks were having a meeting in the compound when the attack occurred. So far, the US drones have carried out more than 30 strikes killing dozens of people.
Agencies add: A suspected US missile strike destroyed a major Taliban training camp in Ladha Saturday, killing at least 35 mainly Al-Qaeda foreign operatives, security officials said.
Two missiles fired by an unmanned drone struck the camp of top Taliban commander Baitullah Mehsud in the tribal area of Ladha near the Afghan border, they said, adding Mehsud was not in the camp at the time of the strike.
Two Arabs, some local Taliban and 25 Uzbeks were killed in the strike, the latest in a series of such attacks which have drawn strong protest from Pakistan.
"The death toll in the twin missile strikes has jumped to 35," a senior security official said, revising upward the earlier toll of 20.
Mehsud heads the TTP, who is the most wanted militant of Pakistan, accused of plotting the 2007 assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto.
The latest drone strike came despite Pakistan's hopes the US administration of President Barack Obama would review the policy and abandon what Islamabad has called a violation of its sovereignty.
Several Al-Qaeda operatives have been killed in similar US missile strikes in the past year.
But the strikes have fuelled anti-American sentiments in Pakistan and particularly in the tribal belt, where Washington says Al-Qaeda and Taliban sanctuaries exist.
In January a US drone attack killed the head of Al-Qaeda operations in Pakistan, Kenyan national Usama al-Kini, and his lieutenant Sheikh Ahmed Salim Swedan in South Waziristan.
Another US drone attack in November killed Rashid Rauf, the alleged Al-Qaeda mastermind of a 2006 transatlantic airplane bombing plot, as well as an Egyptian Al-Qaeda operative, security officials have said.
More than two dozen similar strikes have been carried out since August 2008, killing more than 200 people, most of them militants.
Most of the previous US strikes targeted areas under the control of Maulvi Nazir, a key Taliban commander accused by the United States of recruiting and sending fighters to Afghanistan to attack US and NATO forces.
The incident comes a day after US envoy Richard Holbrooke left Pakistan, where he visited the northwest and held talks with military commanders about the fight against extremists.
Pakistani troops have been battling militants in the lawless tribal region as well as in the sprawling northern Swat valley.
More than 1,500 Pakistani troops have been killed at the hands of extremists since 2002, after the Islamabad government joined the so-called "war on terror" declared by former US president George W Bush.