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Over 43 Terrorists Killed (North Waziristan)

Posted by on Tuesday, January 21, 2014, 12:40
This news item was posted in Pakistani News category and has 0 Comments so far .

Over 43 suspected terrorists have been killed in coordinated operation of the armed forces including the Air Force in North Waziristan tribal agency since last night.

North Waziristan

North Waziristan

Security sources said that over 15 suspected terrorists were killed in armed forces operation this morning in different areas of North Waziristan while four were killed when jet fighters bombed hideouts in Tirah valley of the Khyber Agency.

In addition, 24 were killed in overnight bombing by jet fighters in Mir Ali and Miranshah areas of North Waziristan.

Sources said that those killed were involved in Bannu, Qissa Khawani and Church attacks.

The retaliation by armed forces came after Taliban bombing in Bannu on Sunday that killed over 20 personnel of the armed forces followed by a suicide attack near army headquarters in Rawalpindi yesterday in which over 13 people were killed including five army men.

On Tuesday as well militants attacked security forces check posts in Hangu and Kurram Agency in which two soldiers were martyred.

Meanwhile, a Reuters report quoting military sources and residents said that Pakistan fighter jets bombed suspected Taliban hideouts in a tribal area on the Afghan border on Tuesday after a wave of insurgent attacks against security forces, sending villagers fleeing from their homes.

It was the first time the air force has resorted to aerial strikes in the region since it struck a ceasefire agreement with local Taliban chiefs in 2007.

The air strikes took place as pressure grows on Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to take tougher action against the Taliban following the attacks.

The Pakistani Taliban are fighting to topple the central government in Islamabad and impose strict Islamic rule in the nuclear armed South Asian nation.

Sparking speculation that a military operation was imminent, Sharif cancelled his trip to the World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort of Davos on Sunday following a Taliban attack on an army convoy in which 20 soldiers were killed.

“This hadn’t been planned before, and Pakistan air force fighter jets were called to hit hideouts of the militants involved in attacks on security forces,” said one military official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Military officials said fighter jets were targeting only militant positions around the Mir Ali area of North Waziristan.

Following a wave of fighter jets strikes, the army later called in helicopter gunships to shell suspected hideouts.

Residents said bombardment started overnight without any warning. Tribal elder Malik Jan Mohammad in the Mir Ali area said 15 people were killed. A Taliban source put the death toll at 27, including civilians.

“We were all asleep when the planes started bombing the village,” said Khyal Zaman, a tribesman from the village of Esori.

“We had no idea what happened in the dark and those who survived came out of their homes in desperation along with children and started walking away into the open.”

Sharif, who came to power promising to make peace with the Taliban though talks and not military action, has been under growing pressure both from the United States and hawks in the Pakistani army to do more to crush the insurgency.

No meaningful talks have taken place for years. The death of Taliban chief Hakimullah Mehsud in a November drone strike has further enraged the Taliban, with its new leader, Mullah Fazlullah, vowing to step up his campaign against the army.

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