ISLAMABAD - Pakistan on Monday strongly condemned the US drone strike that took place in Shawal area of Miranshah in North Waziristan.

Four unmanned aircraft hovered above a village in Shawal before one fired two missiles at a compound just before sunset, killing at least eight people and wounding three others.

“These unilateral strikes are a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Pakistan has repeatedly emphasised the importance of bringing an immediate end to drone strikes.” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.

The Ministry further said that the government has consistently maintained that drone strikes are counter-productive, entail loss of innocent civilian lives and have human rights and humanitarian implications.

Such strikes also set dangerous precedents in the inter-state relations, the statement said. Attacks by unmanned American aircraft are deeply unpopular in Pakistan, but Washington views them as a vital tool in the fight against Taliban and al Qaeda militants in the lawless Tribal Areas along the border with Afghanistan.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has pledged a harder stance on the US regarding drone attacks though it is yet unclear how his administration would be able to force end of the programme.

Kerry due in Pakistan tomorrow?

US Secretary of State John Kerry will pay a two-day visit to Pakistan beginning on July 31.

According to media reports, Kerry’s visit schedule has been finalised.

Kerry had accepted an invitation to visit Pakistan, extended to him by Sartaj Aziz during a meeting held on the sidelines of the 20th Ministerial Meeting of the Asean Regional Forum on July 2.

The US Secretary of State was previously expected to arrive in Pakistan on July 29th.

However, the trip was later postponed after US officials said that he would visit Pakistan in “a few days time”.

Reports said that the condition of Kerry’s wife, who had suffered a stroke earlier this month, was improving and that the US secretary of State was expected to arrive in Pakistan on July 31st.

According to the new itinerary, Kerry would hold meetings with the President, Prime Minister, and the Adviser for National Security and Foreign Affairs on August 1.

The US official will hold negotiations with key Pakistani government and military leadership over resumption of Pak-US Strategic dialogue.

During his meetings, matters pertaining to US economic assistance to Islamabad including funding for Diamer-Basha Dam will also come under discussion.

Key issues including drone attacks in Pakistan are expected to be discussed during the US official’s visit.