Pakistani forces kill 45 militants: TV

13:13, September 01, 2010      

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Pakistan military helicopters shelled suspected militants and killed 45 in the country's northwest Khyber tribal region, local TV channels reported Wednesday.

Dawn TV, citing security sources, reported that the forces conducted operation in mountainous Tirah valley in Khyber on Tuesday.

Geo television reported that several women and children were among those killed, adding that 15 people also injured in the bombing.

The reports said that the people were returning from a funeral when they came under bombing. It said that the helicopters targeted the vehicles of the suspected militants.

Official sources were quoted as saying that the militants had used the women and children as shield, saying that relatives of the militants would be considered as suspects.

Sources said that the militants were hiding with relatives when the security forces shelled their houses after receiving information about their presence.

The injured were shifted to hospital in Jamrud, the main town in Khyber agency. Two critical injured were shifted to Peshawar, sources said.

Tirah valley considered to be a stronghold of the militant group Lashkar-e-Islam. The Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) have also some presence in the area.

In April the security forces killed some 60 tribesmen when the army fighter planes bombed Tirah, the worst incident of civilian casualties. Army chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani had apologized to the people of Khyber agency on the civilian deaths.

Source: Xinhua


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