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PESHAWAR: Inspector General Police Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Nasir Khan Durrani, said in an interview with Dawn that a specialised combat unit, based on the pattern of Pakistan Army's Special Service Group and the US Marines, would be set up in the province by the end of this year, DawnNews reported.

The police chief said that an elite Anti-Terrorist Force comprising 1,050 elite commandoes had been set up while the combat unit would be set up for anti-terror operations. He said that KP police had proposed the recruitment of tribal youth in the police force, at the lower and higher level, adding “it would help bring the tribal youth to the mainstream and help build confidence in them.”

Speaking about tracking down the terrorists and foreign elements, Durrani said the KP government had legislated to track down illegal residents living in rented houses and hotels. He said the police was also assessing the establishment of fortress like pickets along the border to ward off militants.

“About 150 of the militant operators arrested in the last six months have helped in tracing these terrorists groups,” he said, adding “in the last five years the police have unearthed about 39 different militant groups who had been involved in the terrorist activities in the province.”

He also said that the police force have identified about nine militant groups which were involved in terrorist activities in the provincial capital city of Peshawar.

Despite denials of involvement by the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan, in attacks on the polio teams across KP, the IG said that their sleeper cells of the banned organisation present in settled areas of the province were behind the attacks, adding “they are interlinked in one way or the other, they have build up linkages and are operating on certain demands which had become evident during investigations.”

About the impact of the militancy in the wake of talks with the TTP, the KP's IGP said: ”Look its good, if some groups are willing to enter the parameters of Pakistan's constitution and are willing to talk, it would alienate the war-mongers and the law enforcers would be able to hunt them down easily.”

Durrani said Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police had recommended head money for over 430 terrorists including key TTP and Lahskar-i-Islam commanders who had remained involved in the settled areas of the province for the past many years and were wanted by the authorities.

To a query, Nasir Durrani said that the recommendation for fixing head money 430 terrorists including the key commanders of TTP, Lashakar-i-Islam and other sleepers operative in Peshawar.