Afghan Taliban militants kill 45 in cross-border

Last Updated: Saturday, August 27, 2011 - 23:36

Islamabad: Hundreds of Taliban militants from
Afghanistan launched cross border raids on Pakistani check
posts on Saturday, killing 25 security men, with the Army blaming
"scanty" presence of NATO and Afghan forces along the
Pak-Afghan frontier for the attack.

As many as 20 militants were also killed in the attack in
northern Chitral district early this morning.

The Pakistan army confirmed that 25 security men were
killed when hundreds of militants from Afghan territory
attacked seven border checkpoints.

An army statement said that security forces personnel
including 16 paramilitary `Frontier Scouts`, 4 policemen and 5
local militia `Levies` were killed when 200-300 militants from
across Afghanistan attacked seven check posts in Chitral.

"Own security personnel defended the posts by engaging the
attackers and reportedly 20 terrorists were killed. However,
two border posts were overrun by the terrorists," the
statement said.

Reinforcements have been sent to beef up the border posts,
the statement from the army`s Inter-Services Public Relations

The statement said Taliban militants from Afghanistan`s
Kunar and Nooristan Provinces launched the attack.

It said militants from Pakistan`s northwestern Swat
valley, Dir district and Bajaur tribal region organised by
militant leaders Maulvi Fazlullah and Maulvi Faqir Muhammad
with local Afghans attacked the security forces posts in

"Due to scanty presence of NATO and ANA forces along
Pak-Afghan border, the terrorists are using these areas as
safe havens and have mounted repeated attacks against own
security forces posts and isolated villages," it said.

Sources said that Fazaullah fled to Afghanistan after
security forces launched a major offensive against the
militants in 2009 and cleared the area. Maulvi Faqir, deputy
chief of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan or TTP escaped to
Afghanistan last year from Bajaur.

"Since their expulsion from their native areas, the
terrorists have organised themselves in Kunar and Nooristan
Provinces with the support of local Afghan authorities," the
army said.

The statement said that since last one year accurate
intelligence about large concentration of terrorists from
Pakistan and their local Afghan supporters in Kunar and
Nooristan provinces has been shared with NATO and Afghan
authorities but no worthwhile action has been taken against
the terrorists and attacks against Pakistani border posts have
continued with impunity.

It is the second attack on Pakistani posts in Chitral from
Afghan territory.

Pakistan army said last month that nearly 50 Pakistani
soldiers and several civilians had been killed in at least
five attacks on border check posts by militants who crossed
into Pakistan from Afghan territory.


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First Published: Saturday, August 27, 2011 - 23:36

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