BANNU: The army has refused to give a timeframe for winding up Operation Zarb-i-Azb continuing against militants in North Waziristan since June.
Speaking as chief guest after a friendly match between Afridi-XI and DG ISPR-XI at the Bakkakhel camp on Wednesday, Director General of the Inter-Services Public Relations Major General Asim Bajwa said the operation was bearing fruit as most areas had been cleared of militants.
He said they were trying to complete the operation as soon as possible.
The ISPR chief said that people displaced from the conflict zone would be allowed to return to their homes soon. “But before that the volatile region will be cleared of mines and improvised explosive devices planted by militants.”
He rejected reports about looting of houses of displaced people living in camps.
Also read: IDPs want time frame for their return
Talking to journalists, Shahid Afridi praised the army for organising the event and said it would boost the morale of internally displaced persons who were leading a miserable life in camps.
He said some tribal youths could make it to the national team if they were given opportunities and facilities.
Afridi-XI won the match by 31 runs.
Published in Dawn, October 23rd, 2014