KHAR, Sept 9: The security forces on Sunday claimed to have recovered 19 bodies of militants during a search operation in areas along the border in Salarzai tehsil of Bajaur Agency.

All the militants active in the area had been pushed back into Afghanistan, they said.

Officials said the security forces and volunteers of Salarzai peace committee conducted a joint operation in the areas cleared of militants after receiving information that the fleeing militants had planted bombs and other explosives in different parts of the tehsil.

They said the bodies were recovered in twos or threes along the border. A huge quantity of weapons and explosives was also found.

They said that bomb disposal experts were taking part in the search operation while some areas had been cleared of planted explosives.

Local people said that dozens of houses in the border villages had been destroyed in the two-week fighting between the security forces and the militants.

Meanwhile, registration of the tribesmen displaced because of the law and order situation in the border areas of Salarzai continued for the second day.

According to local officials, over 2,000 affected families have been registered and the process is continuing.  Distribution of food packages to the affected persons was also going on in various parts of the tehsil.

According to local administration, 800 more families have been provided the food packages.

Also, elders of Salarzai tribe on Sunday pledged to continue their fight against the militants and assured the administration of full support in eradication of militants from the region.

They held a grand jirga with the senior officials of the local administration and the security forces in Pasht area of Salarzai.

Notables of different sub-tribes, senior members of peace committee, Political Agent Syed Abdul Jabbar Shah and Commandant Bajaur Scouts Colonel Shakeel Janjua attended the jirga.

On the occasion Salarzai elders, including Malik Nizamudin Khan, Malik Mohammad Nawaz Khan and Malik Ziarat Gul, said the people of Salarzai tribe were committed to eliminating militancy.—Correspondent

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