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Clashes spread to most of Kurram region

Published Aug 15, 2008 12:00am

PARACHINAR, Aug 14: As the local administration and law-enforcement personnel continued to watch from the sidelines, there was not let-up in bloodshed in Kurram tribal region.

Fierce clashes engulfed almost the whole of Kurram tribal region on Wednesday night and Thursday and another 18 people were killed and 30 injured.

There were reports that militants from adjacent tribal areas and settled parts of the NWFP were heading towards the region to join the fighting.

Massive displacement from the lower Kurram is under way and people were moving to Hangu and Kohat districts.

Sources said clashes had intensified in lower and upper parts of the region and rival factions were attacking homes and each other’s positions in Piwar, Kirman, Bagzai, Balishkhel, Khwar Kali, Enzeri and Alizai. Sadda town, tehsil headquarters of Lower Kurram, came under intense shelling from Balishkhel village.

The sources said that eight people were killed in an attack on a post in Parachamkani east of Parachinar town. Heavy fighting was reported from Alizai and Bagzai area where a village was under siege.

The death toll from the week-long clashes has climbed to 126. At least 211 people have been injured and dozens of houses set on fire.

Meanwhile, residents of Parachinar observed the Independence Day as a black day to protest against the apathetic attitude of the government. Shops and markets in the town remained closed and black flags were hoisted on houses.