The troops in their new campaign also claimed to have
destroyed three Taliban training centres.
Though the Army had claimed that it was on the verge
of tapering off anti-Taliban operations in Swat, Buner and
Dir, the forces conducted search and combing operations
following renewed heavy resistance by the militants.
Four Taliban fighters linked to warlord Baitullah
Mehsud were killed in the aerial bombardment carried out by
fighter jets in Sarwakai area in south Waziristan considered
to be haven for Taliban and al Qaeda militants.
Troops killed 16 militants and destroyed three
terrorist training centres during a search operation at
Tsapparai Kandao in Dir in the past 24 hours.
In Buner district, which has witnessed an upsurge of
violence in the past few days, two soldiers were injured in an
exchange of fire at Dewana Baba. Troops killed three militants
and destroyed a vehicle loaded with weapons and ammunition.
Security forces killed two militants and apprehended
another rebel during a search operation at Malukabad in Swat.
Six more militants were killed and four suspects were
apprehended during an operation at Ningolai, a former Taliban
Troops also carried out a search at Qalagai Banda,
where they destroyed a house, recovered a vehicle and
apprehended five militants.
The search and clearance operations have continued
amidst the return to Malakand of thousands of people displaced
by the military operations over the past two-and-half months.
Meanwhile, the paramilitary Frontier Corps today said
it had arrested two Taliban commanders and seized arms and
explosives from their possession during a raid in Landikotal
in the Khyber tribal region.
The two commanders were arrested during separate
raids in Landikotal, an official said. The arms seized from
them included a rocket launcher, mortar shells,
remote-controlled bombs, thousands of bullets, explosive
materials and drugs.
The two commanders are linked to the outlawed
Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan headed by Baitullah Mehsud.
Islamabad: Pakistani military jets pounded Taliban hideouts and strongholds as the ground forces continued search and cordon operations killing 27 militants including four close aides of top commander Baitullah Mehsud in Malakand division of restive NWFP.
First Published: Wednesday, July 22, 2009, 19:02