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Missile strike on Pakistani seminary kills eight

February 28, 2008 11:32 IST

A missile strike on a religious seminary and a house in Pakistan's troubled South Waziristan tribal region has killed at least eight persons, witnesses said on Thursday.

Local TV channels put the death toll at 12, although there was no official confirmation of the attack.

The missile hit a madrassa in the Azam Warsak area of South Waziristan at 2 am when the seminary's students were asleep, local residents said. TV channels reported that 11 others were injured in the attack.

Most of those who died were believed to be Afghan students. Three rockets hit the seminary and a house, local people said. It was not immediately clear whether the missile was fired by United States-led coalition forces in Afghanistan or by Pakistani forces.

The missile strike comes at a time when local militants in South Waziristan led by Pakistani Taliban commander Baitullah Mehsud have called a unilateral ceasefire in the region.

The attacks shattered the relative calm that has prevailed in the region for the past few days. Top Al Qaeda commander Abu Laith al-Libi was killed in January in a missile strike in North Waziristan that was believed to have been carried out by a US pilotless plane operating from Afghanistan.

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