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50 militants killed in Mohmand clashes

April 07, 2011

GHALANAI, April 7: Fifty militants and four security personnel were killed in bombings and clashes in parts of Mohmand tribal region on Thursday.

During the second phase of operation Brekhna (lightning) in militant-infested areas along the Afghan border, security forces backed by warplanes, helicopter gunships and artillery pounded militant hideouts in Suran Darra, Mosakhel, Bahadar Kalley, Matai, Shinwari and Ghalingar areas of Bezai and Safi tehsils.

Administration officials said 50 militants were killed and several others injured as air strikes destroyed several hideouts on Wednesday night and Thursday. Ten of the militants were killed in a clash in Wali Dad Kor.

Four security personnel were killed and eight others were injured in an attack by militants in the area. Nine militants were killed by air strikes in Sheikh Baba area.

In Rahmat Kor, a stray shell fell on a house killing a boy and injuring two persons.

Official sources said security forces were combing areas along the Afghan border and clearing landmines planted by fleeing militants. A member of the bomb disposal squad was injured when a landmine exploded near the FC post in Baidmani area of Bezai. Two personnel were injured by a landmine blast in Chenari area of Safi.

Security and administration personnel blew up houses of suspected militants Mian Mohammad and Imran and a shop owned by Liaq Khan in Dwezai.

Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan spokesman (Mohmand chapter) Sajjad Mohmand spoke to newsmen on phone and claimed that the TTP had inflicted heavy losses on security forces.

Meanwhile, political administration officials have claimed to have destroyed poppy crops in different areas of the agency.

Our correspondent adds from Bajaur: Poppy crop on several acres of land was destroyed voluntarily by tribesmen after talks between Chamarkand elders and administration officials.

Addressing a tribal jirga, Tariq Khan, Assistant Political Agent of Nawagai, said the tribal elders had always acted wisely and cooperated with the administration in the interest of their people. He said peace had been restored in Bajaur and development works would now be taken up in the region.

Meanwhile, security forces have arrested 20 of the 300 militants detained in Bara Kaman Gara, Khari Kaman Gara and other areas of Chamarkand, some 40km from Khar, the headquarters of Bajaur agency.