Trump cancels reporting deaths by US assassination drones

Press TV – March 7, 2019

US President Donald Trump has canceled the Obama-era plicy of reporting deaths caused by US assassination drones.

Trump signed an executive order Wednesday to roll back Obama-era rules for targeted killings in the United States’ so-called war on terror.

Based on the order, US intelligence officials are no longer required to publicly disclose the numbers of people killed by the drones.

Previously, the administration was obliged to release an unclassified summary of “the number of strikes undertaken by the United States government against terrorist targets outside areas of active hostilities, as well as assessments of combatant and noncombatant deaths resulting from those strikes, among other information.”

Use of drones on the pretext of fighting Daesh and al-Qaeda militants expanded severely under former President Barack Obama.

The rescinded rules also enjoyed a provision that required the CIA to come to “near certainty” of no civilian casualties before launching a strike.

New reports, however, suggest that delegation of authority to field level military commanders to use the killing drones has recently resulted in a surge in the number of innocent civilians being killed.

According to Michael Burns, political and military analyst based in New York, “the increase in the use of drones — which are officially known as ‘unmanned aerial systems’ to mask their vicious ability — to project power in other regions of the world has increased substantially under the Trump administration.”

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