"We Yemenis are the ones who pay the price of the 'war on terror,'" Faisal bin Ali Jaber, a relative of a cleric and a police officer who were both killed in a drone attack in August 2012, was quoted as saying in the report. "We are caught between a drone on one side and al Qaeda on the other."
The report warned that "should the United States continue targeted killings in Yemen without addressing the consequences of killing civilians and taking responsibility for unlawful deaths, it risks further angering many Yemenis and handing another recruiting card to AQAP."
'A dangerous precedent'
The reports set out a list of recommendations, primarily for the U.S. government, but also for authorities in Pakistan and Yemen.
More broadly, Amnesty warned that the American government may be setting a troubling standard in its use of drones that other countries could follow.
"U.S. policy and practice on targeted killings and drones are not only of concern in their own right: they also set a dangerous precedent that other states may seek to exploit to avoid responsibility for their own unlawful killings," the report said.
In Yemen, images of the charred, shattered remains of the cleric and policemen killed in August 2012 have circulated in the village where the attack took place, the Human Rights Watch report says.
"Now when villagers see these images," Jaber, the relative, was quoted as saying, "they think of America."