Pak Military takes holds, Terrorists in back foot ?

Twelve militants killed in South Waziristan clashes

Saturday, 07 Nov, 2009
APP-SWA-300

ISLAMABAD: The military said Saturday it had killed 12 Taliban militants as government troops pressed a major offensive in the South Waziristan tribal area bordering Afghanistan.

Some 30,000 troops backed by fighter jets and helicopter gunships launched a fierce air and ground offensive into the northwest region three weeks ago and the military has since claimed a series of successes.

It said troops on Friday penetrated into Makin, the hometown of slain Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud who was killed along with some of his family members in a missile strike fired by a US drone on August 5.

Security forces were also consolidating their positions at Sararogha and its surrounding heights in the rugged mountainous region, the military’s media wing said in a statement.

‘In last 24 hours, 12 terrorists have been killed, and five soldiers including two officers were injured,’ the statement said.

The strategic town of Sararogha was a former operational base of Mehsud.

Security forces also captured a 30-feet long tunnel and ‘plenty of ammunition has been discovered and destroyed’, the statement said.

Pakistan, vowing to crush Tehrik-i-Taliban in the region, said so far 458 Taliban fighters and 42 troops had been killed in the offensive.

The casualty figures cannot be verified because communication lines are down and journalists and aid workers are barred from the area.

South Waziristan has been dubbed by Washington as the most dangerous place in the world because of an abundance of Al-Qaeda and Taliban fighters.

The long-awaited assault on South Waziristan came after a spring offensive in the northwestern Swat valley. In July, the government declared the offensive a success but sporadic outbreaks of violence have continued in the valley.

The South Waziristan offensive has displaced more than 250,000 people and the United Nations has urged Pakistan to ensure safety and security of civilians during the operation.

Army brigadier, driver injured in Islamabad gun-attack

By Mohammad Asghar
Saturday, 07 Nov, 2009
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SSP Islamabad Police Tahir Malik told DawnNews that both the brigadier and his driver have been shifted to a hospital and are now in stable condition. — Photo by Reuters.

ISLAMABAD: A brigadier and his driver were injured when two men opened fire on his private car here on Friday.

The attackers escaped on a motorbike despite extensive police patrol and checkpoints in the capital.

Brig Hafiz Sohail was going to his office along with his driver Ramzan when the gunmen ambushed his car in sector I-8/4.

The car veered off the road and hit an under-construction building.

The injured men trapped in the car were pulled out and taken to the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences where they were stated to be in stable condition.

However, the driver was operated upon and shifted to the Combined Military Hospital.

This was the third attack on an army officer in the federal capital over the past two weeks.

None of the assailants has been arrested so far.

A police official told Dawn that a gunman ambushed the car from the green belt in I-8/4 and escaped with his accomplice who was waiting for him on a motorbike.

The SP said: ‘We have found a 9mm pistol and some casings, including those of SMG, from the scene.’

One security official claimed that it was a general, not targeted, attack.

Thirteen injured in Quetta grenade blast

Saturday, 07 Nov, 2009

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Security officials survey the site of a grenade attack at Meezan Chowk in Quetta. Two children and one security man was among those injured in the attack on a checkpoint. – Reuters photo

QUETTA: Thirteen people including two children and a security personnel sustained injuries when a hand grenade exploded at Mizan Chowk, a central commercial area of the provincial capital here on Saturday evening.

According to Quetta police, militants hurled a hand grenade at a check post of Frontier Corps established in Mizan Chowk in the evening when the area was thronged by customers. As a result, thirteen people received injuries; out of them two were seriously injured.

The injured were rushed to Civil Hospital Quetta. According to doctors, the condition of two of the injured was serious while the remaining people were out of danger.

Some police officials who inspected the site after the blast, told newsmen that militants might have hurled hand grenade from the roof a building as no evidence could be found of whether they were riding a bike or were on foot.

Earlier, on the same day before noon, militants hurled a hand grenade into the premises of a girls school located near Mannu Jan Road Quetta which injured two teachers and a student. The hand grenade fell at the roof. The security officials said that a bigger loss of life might have occurred if the explosive had fallen at the site where teachers and students were present.—APP

Courtesy : DAWN, APP, AFP, REUTERS.

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