Peshawar: Over 90 militants have been killed
in Pakistan`s restive Aurakzai tribal region in recent
operations by the Army to flush out elements associated with
the Taliban, a top paramilitary commander said on Friday.
Pakistani troops have registered major gains in their
offensive in Aurakzai with 32 militants being killed in an
action last night while another 60 eliminated during air
strikes earlier, said the Frontier Corps Inspector General,
Maj Gen Tariq Khan.
Most of the dead militants were Uzbeks and Arabs, he
Khan, who was speaking to reporters after attending the
funeral prayers for an army officer killed during a clash with
militants yesterday, said the bodies of 32 militants had been
recovered by security forces.
Troops have advanced into Sultanzai, Anjani, Chitri Feroz
Khel and Kalaya and achieved significant gains against the
militants, he said.
Army soldiers and paramilitary forces from the Frontier
Corps and Frontier Constabulary are taking part in the
operation that was launched in Aurakzai Agency three days ago.
Asked about the launching of a military operation in
North Waziristan Agency, Khan said the Pakistan Army would
make a decision in this regard.
Security forces have stepped up a drive to flush out
militants from Aurakzai Agency believed to be sheltering here
from a military offensive in the nearby South Waziristan.
The troops have launched a number of raids on the Taliban
hideouts for a past 48-hours using heavy artillery and
helicopter gunships to target the militants bringing the death
toll to nearly 90.
Responding to a question about the possible involvement
of a neighbouring country in fomenting unrest within Pakistan,
he said others should not be blamed unless there is "solid
However, he said some explosives, weapons and vehicles
seized during recent operations indicated that the involvement
of "foreign hands" could not be ruled out.