UN: ‘No Pakistani civilians killed by US drones in 2013’

No Pakistani civilians were killed by US drones last year as Washington slashed its controversial use of the pilotless planes in the country, a UN expert said Wednesday.

“I am pleased to be able to report a very significant de-escalation in the use of armed drones by the United States in… Pakistan,” Ben Emmerson told reporters in Geneva.

The total number of recorded strikes in 2013 was down to 27 from a peak of 128 in 2010, said Emmerson, who monitors respect for human rights in counter-terrorism operations.

“But perhaps most significantly, for the first time in nine years there were no reports of civilian casualties during 2013 in the FATA area of Pakistan,” he added.