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Islamabad Remains Opposed To Drones After Obama Address

The Pakistani Foreign Ministry says U.S. drone strikes in the country have caused more than 2,000 deaths since 2004. (file photo)
The Pakistani government has reiterated its view that U.S. drone attacks on its territory remain illegal, after President Barack Obama unveiled new rules for their use.

Islamabad said on May 24 that it welcomes some aspects of Obama's speech, particularly his recognition that "force alone cannot make us safe", but said it remained firm that "the drone strikes are counter-productive, entail loss of innocent civilian lives, [and] have human rights and humanitarian implications."

The statement by the Pakistani Foreign Ministry added that drone attacks "violate the principles of national sovereignty, territorial integrity and international law."

The Foreign Ministry says a minimum of 330 drone strikes have been carried out in Pakistan since 2004, causing at least 2,200 deaths.

The attacks typically target suspected Al-Qaeda and Taliban militants but are believed to have killed some civilians.

Based on reporting by AFP, AP, and dpa