Terrorism claims 81 lives in week in northwest Pakistan

15:47, August 31, 2010      

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By Syed Moazzam Hashmi

The continuing spate of terrorism killed at least 81 lives, including civilians and militants, during the past week in northwest Pakistan's tribal areas bordering Afghanistan, intelligence reports suggested Tuesday.

In a latest development, an important militant commander was among three insurgents killed by Pakistani troops on Tuesday in a clash in Swat valley in the northwest. A cache of arms was also recovered from the militants. However, the identity of the killed militant commander was not disclosed by the officials, local media said.

Aug. 23 was the worst day as terrorists were at loose retaliating against closing down of their flood relief camps providing cooked food and other essentials to flood victims in the northwest Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Local analysts believed that the "preemptive" crackdown was initiated by Pakistani law enforcers at the behest of concerns expressed by U.S. Senator John Kerry. A large number of civilians had to pay a heavy toll of lives as a result of this hush-hush affair, further igniting the spewing front in a situation which demands focus on flood rescue and relief operations.

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