The military has also successfully brought to a close a massive offensive in Khyber tribal region, effectively flushing out militants and blocking their crossing points on borders with Afghanistan, according to government and security officials.
Chief of Army Staff (CoAS) General Raheel Sharif on Friday vowed to continue counter-terrorism operations to clean Pakistan from terrorism.
The army is meeting fierce resistance as it moves further into the lower-lying areas of the Shawal Valley, the Taliban’s last stronghold, military officials said. Search operations in the area have also started.
“We will not stop unless we achieve our end objective of a terror-free Pakistan”, he said.
The Pakistani military spokesman said “intelligence-based” operations had cut off the Pakistani Taliban faction headquartered in Shawal from its cells in Pakistani cities.
The intelligence officials said that troops moving from both the North and South Waziristan sides into the Shawal Valley were encountering tough resistance from militants.
“A January 5 drone strike on Shawal killed Ahmed Farouq, al-Qaida”s operations commander for India, but inadvertently also killed two Western hostages he had been holding for ransom, including Warren Weinstein of Maryland, a contractor for the USA Agency for worldwide Development.
North Waziristan: at least twelve militants were killed and several others injured on Sunday in an exchange of fire with security forces in Datta Khel of North Waziristan, ISPR reported.
The vehicle was targeted with the roadside bomb in Dattakhel area of North Waziristan agency killing three soldiers and wounding six others.
The Taliban had controlled nearly the entire northwestern region of North Waziristan before troops launched their offensive a year ago.