Code 52465
PublishDate: Thursday, August 30, 2012 19:47

Pakistan army kills 18 militants as fighting rages

Pakistan has said military operations have severely weakened the militants, and their fighters have been cleared out of Bajaur and other regions along the porous border.

Pakistani security forces killed 18 Taliban militants on Thursday in Bajaur region, a military official said, in the fourth straight day of fighting which has cast doubt on the effectiveness of crackdowns on militant groups. 

Pakistan has said military operations have severely weakened the militants, and their fighters have been cleared out of Bajaur and other regions along the porous border. 

The military, which has declared victory in those areas, said the militants killed on Thursday included two commanders from the Taliban branch that controlled the Swat Valley, before an army offensive cleared the group from there in 2009. 

Pakistan, a strategic U.S. ally, has been trying to break the back of its home-grown Taliban for several years. But the militants have proven resilient, staging suicide bombings and other attacks on the military and police.
(Reuters)  


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