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Tehsil in Bajaur cleared of militants


KHAR, Sept 8: Security forces have regained control of Salarzai tehsil of Bajaur Agency as militants have fled Batwar and other areas along the border with Afghanistan, official sources said.

An official told Dawn on Saturday that security forces backed by the Salarzai Qaumi Lashkar pushed back the militants who had sneaked into several areas of Pakistan from Afghanistan’s Kunar province.

He said security forces fought against the Taliban for two weeks before the militants fled the areas.

“Although the militants gave us a tough time, finally we succeeded in our mission,” the official said, adding checkposts had been set up in the area that had been cleared of militants.

“Security along the border has been beefed up and several new posts have been set up. No one will be allowed to carry out such activities in Pakistani territory,” the official said.

Meanwhile, Tehrik-i-Tali-ban Pakistan confirmed that its fighters had vacated the Salarzai region of Bajaur Agency.

TTP spokesman Ihsanullah Ihsan told reporters from an undisclosed location that the Taliban had vacated the border areas in the larger interest of their movement.

“We have vacated the areas under a strategy and the fighters will soon come again to Salarzai tehsil,” he said, adding the next attack in the border areas would be stronger than the past ones.