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12 militants killed in Pakistan attack


A Pakistani soldier, file photo
At least 12 militants have been killed and six others injured in a Pakistani military attack on militant hideouts in the northwestern Orakzai tribal region.

Backed by helicopter gunships, military forces pounded several targets in Orakzai Agency early on Friday, a Press TV correspondent and Pakistani media reported.

Four hideouts and a vehicle belonging to suspected militants were ruined during the attack.

A huge cache of arms, including rockets, mortars, hand grenades and explosives was recovered during a search operation carried out by the security forces.

Taliban spokesman, Hafiz Saeed, however, denied the casualty reports, saying no pro-Taliban militants were killed or injured in the shelling.

The Army has intensified its attacks on the militants’ hideouts in the Orakzai tribal region after the group attacked a security forces’ convoy with a roadside bomb on October 22. At least seven soldiers lost their lives in the incident.

It was the third bomb attack targeting Pakistani forces in the country’s northwestern region.

Pakistan is struggling with violence and repeated attacks in which thousands of people have lost their lives.

The Pakistani army has launched several operations in the Northwest in a bid to flush out pro-Taliban militants from its tribal zone.

The army believes that the militants have shifted their operations from Waziristan and the Orakzai Agency to the Kurram Agency.

Militant attacks and political unrest have claimed the lives of over 4,000 people throughout Pakistan since 2007.

Meanwhile, the country has witnessed recurrent non-UN-sanctioned US drone attacks, which have also caused an increasing number of civilian casualties.

Since August 2008, approximately a thousand people have been killed in about 100 attacks by US drones in the tribal areas of Pakistan. Over 90 percent of the victims have been civilians.

DB/TG/MGH

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