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30 militants killed in Pakistan military operation in tribal belt

Saturday, 21 June 2014 - 2:39pm IST | Agency: PTI

At least 30 militants were killed today in targeted airstrikes conducted by Pakistan's military in the restive northwest tribal region, taking the total number of terrorists killed in the army's all-out offensive against the Taliban to over 260. "At 0500 hours three hideouts were destroyed in Hassu Khel in North Waziristan Agency, killing 20 terrorists," Major General Asim Saleem Bajwa said.

Ten terrorists were killed when jets attacked and destroyed two hideouts close to the Pak-Afghan border in Khyber Agency, he said in a statement. These targeted strikes were made in areas with no civilian population.

So far more than 260 militants have been killed in the all-out offensive against the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) known as operation 'Zarb-i-Azb' that was launched on Sunday, according to the army. The operation was launched following a deadly attack on Karachi international airport which killed 37 people, including the 10 attackers. The militants are mostly foreign fighters and those who harbour them, with some having fled to the thick forests in Shawal valley extending to South Waziristan Agency.

There are still some key resistance points where the fleeing militants have left some fighters who are planting mines to stop the advancement of security forces.

Over 200,000 people have also been displaced by the fighting. According to reports, the army wants to wrap up the operation before start of the holy month of Ramadan that will begin by the end of June.


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