Pakistan strikes kill 60 militants
Published 21/05/2014 | 13:07
Pakistani military jet fighters and helicopter gunships have pounded militant hideouts near the Afghan border, killing 60 militants, the army said.
The airstrikes mainly targeted Mir Ali, a town in the lawless tribal region of North Waziristan, the army said in a statement.
It said 60 terrorists, including some important commanders and foreigners, were killed in the strikes, which also wounded another 30.
One resident, who identified himself as Saeedullah Khan, said the army had also been using artillery fire.
"We heard big bangs," he said. "I saw some houses flattened."
The army did not give more details on the important commanders or the foreign who were killed.
The claims could not be independently verified. The lawless tribal area is off limits to foreign journalists.
The army said investigations into recent attacks against civilians and security forces had led it to the militant hideouts that were targeted.
Waziristan is part of Pakistan's tribal region, which is home to Taliban and al Qaida-linked foreign militants who have been waging a bloody war against the state, killing thousands of people.
Prime minister Nawaz Sharif has been pursuing a policy of negotiation with the Pakistani Taliban to end the decades of militant violence, but government efforts have not yielded any results so far.
Also today, a bomb rigged to a motorcycle exploded outside an office belonging to the Pakistani paramilitary forces in the southern city of Karachi, wounding seven civilians, police official Javed Odho said.