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MIRAMSHAH, Aug 29: Militants have confirmed that Usman Punjabi and his five comrades were killed in a mysterious shootout between two groups in Dandy Derpakhel area of North Waziristan Agency on Saturday.

Reports said the gunfight between the militants of Usman Punjabi and Sabir Mehsud took place near Miramshah after Iftar.

Taliban sources said that Usman Punjabi was involved in the killing of former officer of the Inter Services Intelligence, Khalid Khwaja, last April.

He had claimed responsibility for kidnapping Col (retired) Imam, Squadron Leader (retired) Khalid Khwaja and Pakistan born British journalist in March.

The three persons had gone to the tribal area to make a documentary on Taliban.

After the body of Khwaja was found near Mirali, his family accused Usman of killing him.

Sources said that body of Usman Punjabi and five others were shifted to Datakhel area on Sunday where militants usually bury their colleagues killed in encounters and drone attacks.

The exact reason behind the mysterious shooting between supporters of Usman and his friend Sabir Mehsud could not be known.

According to the unconfirmed reports Sabir along with his people came to his friend’s compound in Dandy Derpakhel after Iftar and then firing took place in the area. North Waziristan has become safe haven for various militants groups hailing from Punjab.