Earlier this week the Express Tribune reported that Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Sami and Defence Council of Pakistan (DPC) Chief, Samiul Haq had called on Imran Khan to nominate Obama in a First Investigation Report (FIR) filed against the drone strike in Hangu and for drones to be shot down. While there is no sign that the Pakistan government will order firing at a drone in the near future, Imran Khan is firing away at the US with an FIR in an effort to make the US accountable for its actions.
Khan’s party, Pakistan Tehrek -e-Insaf (PTI ) has sent a written request to the Inspector General of Police (IPG) at Khyber Pukhtunkhwa (KP) to charge the CIA and US in the FIR for the recent drone attack in Hangu which killed several people. On hearing of the strike, Khan tweeted that this was “an unacceptable US drone attack in Hangu, KP, simply on assumption of possible future terrorism” and that “the KP govt will identify and give out the names of the Hangu drone victims to expose the lie of drones killing only ‘militants'”. There are reports of children being killed in this latest attack and a photograph of a bloodied child’s shoe (though unconfirmed) is doing the rounds on social media to remind people of civilian casualties.
PTI have campaigned for several years against armed drones holding several dharnas, a peace march to Waziristan and currently blocking the NATO supply line. Khan has repeatedly called drone strikes counterproductive stating on 21st November that “the drone killings will once again create more militants and extremists vowing revenge for the killings of Hangu. Why is Nawaz govt silent?”
PTI Press Release on FIR 25-11-2013
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf nominates America and CIA in the First Information Report (FIR) lodged here today by Party’s Central Legal Affairs Secretary.
In his meeting with Inspector General Police Mr. Nasir Durrani, Barrister Salman Afridi had requested to register a formal complaint against American Administration and its Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for carrying out illegal, extrajudicial and dreadful strikes against innocent civilians and Children at Hangu on November 1.
Anchoring upon news of Washington Post, official statement of Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry and Peshawar High Court’s verdict on predator strikes within Pakistan’s territorial boundaries earlier this year in April, the PTI leader urged the provincial Police Chief to book US and its superior spy agency for this particular strikes within the boundaries of an independent and sovereign state to assassinate innocent civilians.
Mr. Nasir Durrani, the IGP KPK assured to lodge formal FIR, as requested and to take stern action subsequently.
Earlier, Information Minster Shah Farman, Revenue Minster Ali Ameen, Education Minster Atif Khan, Finance Minster Siraj Ul Haq, IT Minister Shahram Taraki along with other cabinet members and provincial legislators marched towards US Consulate at Peshawar and handed over official Memorandum to American RSO Christopher Backon condemning drones strikes in Hangu. Meanwhile formal communiqué had also been handed over to UN Officials station at Peshawar.
The Islamic Emirate (Afghan Taliban) released their own drone report on 25th November giving a viewpoint which we don’t often see. They claim drone strikes are inherently unreliable and indiscriminate stating reasons why below:-
Drones are unreliable because they rely on either ground-fed reports or aerial surveillance for identifying potential targets. Ground fed intelligence is cumbersome, slow and prone to inaccuracies. Aerial surveillance is even more unreliable. Furthermore drones are indiscriminate because they mostly rely on missiles for shooting targets. Such weaponry naturally results in a lot of casualties all of whom might not necessarily be involved in any activity against the US. Due to these two weaknesses drone strikes cause disproportionate civilian casualties. These high proportion of civilian casualties in effect ferment a lot of hatred against the US in the affected areas. The affected local populations, traumatized by such attacks, begin to view the Americans as a discriminate and immoral force that is willing to sacrifice the lives of the locals in order to attack a small number of their enemies. This in turn drives a lot of the civilian populace, especially from amongst the young, into the arms of the Mujahideen. Not only that but more importantly, these drone strike work with a double edge because they illustrate that the host government of these areas, often allied with the US, lack full sovereignty and are unable or unwilling to protect their own citizens. Thus the drone strikes unwittingly undermine support for the very same government, whom they intended to shore up support for through these strikes.
Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad. She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.