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Pakistanis Reportedly Killed in Raids; Government in Islamabad Says Missiles Hit Militant Islamic Camps in Afghanistan
[FINAL Edition]
The Washington Post - Washington, D.C.
Subjects: Military air strikes; Terrorism; International relations; Missiles; Fatalities
Author: Khan, Kamran||||||Constable, Pamela
Date: Aug 22, 1998
Start Page: A.16
Section: A SECTION

The American missile strikes against alleged terrorist training camps in Afghanistan Thursday hit two camps operated by radical Pakistani Islamic guerrilla groups, killing or wounding several dozen Pakistanis and further testing already-strained U.S.-Pakistani relations, Pakistani officials said today.

According to senior Pakistani intelligence officials, who interviewed witnesses and wounded Pakistanis arriving in a border town near Peshawar, the victims came from training camps run by the Harkat Ansar and Jamit Mujaheddin groups, which are both militant Islamic organizations accused of terrorism as well as involvement in an insurgency against Indian rule of the disputed Kashmir region. The State Department has declared Harkat Ansar a terrorist organization and U.S. officials say the group was responsible for the 1997 murder of four American oil workers in Karachi.

U.S. officials said the missile attacks were aimed at camps and facilities controlled by Osama bin Laden, a radical Islamic crusader from Saudi Arabia who is accused of organizing the Aug. 7 bombings of two embassies in East Africa and other international terrorist attacks. Bin Laden has been reported in the past by Western intelligence sources to have connections to the Pakistani groups. The news that Pakistanis were killed in the raid helped provoke anti-American demonstrations across Pakistan today by conservative Muslim movements and protests by senior Pakistani officials.

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