“Will I be Next?” - US drone strikes in Pakistan, Amnesty International, October 2013, pp. 76

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In May 2013, US President Obama issued the demonstrably false statement that "before any [drone] strike is taken, there must be near-certainty that no civilians will be killed or injured.” This report documents the effects of the US ‘drone-warfare programme’ in Pakistan’s tribal areas between 2012 and 2013 based on field research carried out in North Waziristan.

The report finds that local communities have little control over the presence of armed groups in their villages and highlights examples of “rescuer attacks”, in which residents come to the scene of a drone attack only to be struck in follow-up strikes. The report also notes that in addition to the terror of US drone strikes, people in North Waziristan are subject to deliberate and indiscriminate attacks by armed groups and Pakistan’s armed forces.

The US has not – and almost certainly will not – be held accountable for these extrajudicial executions and victims have little chance of securing justice as the country’s authorities do not acknowledge responsibility for specific strikes. When evidence does emerge, it asserts that US exceptionalism places the country beyond the reach of national or international laws. If redress is denied by the US, the Pakistani authorities provide little or no assistance to the victims of strikes. The report is available as a free download here (pdf).

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