Pakistan frontier Governor vows to fight Taliban
Peshawar: The governor of Pakistan's northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province on Wednesday vowed to crush Taliban militants in the region after surviving an assassination attempt.
A barrage of rockets was aimed at Masood Kausar as he was scheduled to address a gathering of tribal elders in Orakzai tribal district on Tuesday.
Six people were wounded in the attack, one of them critically.
"We will chase them (Taliban militants) till their complete elimination" Kausar said in a statement. "Terrorists have no faith, no religion. They are enemies of Islam, Pakistan and development of tribal areas."
"They have their own agenda, the agenda of destruction and devastation", Kausar added, urging unity among tribesmen against the Taliban.
A senior government official said on Wednesday that a total of six rocket were fired within short intervals immediately after the governor arrived at the venue of the rally.
The first rocket hit the gathering of 200 tribal elders, the second landed near a helipad while four others dropped in surrounding fields close to the site of the rally.
Kausar said he would never be terrified by "such cowardly acts", stressing his government's "firm resolve to eliminate militancy, terrorism and extremism".
Orakzai, one of the seven districts of Pakistan's federally administered semi-autonomous tribal areas, is a former bastion of Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud.
Kausar said his government controlled most areas of Orakzai and expressed hope that remaining Taliban-infested pockets would be cleared soon.
The tribal belt near the Afghan border, rife with a homegrown insurgency, is also a stronghold of the Afghan Taliban and al Qaeda operatives.
Although Pakistan has fought Taliban militants across much of the region, it has so far withstood American pressure to move against al Qaeda-linked Haqqani network in the another tribal region of North Waziristan.