Uploaded on Mar 3, 2010
The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General Major General Athar Abbas said security forces had broken the back of the militants and secured 95 per cent area of Bajaur Agency.
Briefing reporters of national and international media along with Tariq Khan in Khar, the headquarters of Bajaur, Athar said 60 militants, including seven commanders, had been killed and 250 injured while 10 soldiers embraced martyrdom during the recent operation in Bajaurs Mamond area formerly under the militants control. He did not disclose the names of militants who were killed.
We have cleared the Mamond subdivision and adjoining areas of militants and now the forces have taken control of 95 per cent land of Bajaur and established the writ of the government in the secured area, the military spokesman said.
He praised the people of Mamond Tehsil for their cooperation with the government and security forces in their endeavours against the militants and miscreants and for bringing peace to the area.
Athar said Mamond was the stronghold of militants where, according to him, Pakistani, Uzbek and Afghan insurgents used to receive training for sabotage activities. In reply to a question, he said Maulana Fazlullah, the TTP chief for Swat chapter, was not in Bajaur Agency.
During the press briefing, Major General Tariq Khan alleged that the governor of Kunar province in Afghanistan was supporting the militants in their anti-state activities in Pakistan. He claimed the militants who had fled Bajaur to Afghanistan had been provided shelter by the governor of Kunar.
He said security forces had taken proper steps to stop the infiltration of militants into Pakistan from the Afghan side. The IGFC said the forces had increased security and surveillance with the help of improved technology on the Pak-Afghan border.
On way back to Khar from Damadola, tribal elders and members of Mamond Lashkar accorded a warm welcome to security forces and journalists at Inayat Killay and showered flowers on them.
Muhammad Anis adds: Athar Abbas said the most significant feature of the success of operation was the capture of a key Taliban defensive complex in Damadola.
He said it was for the first time in the history that Pakistans flag was flying over the mountains facing eastern Afghanistan. Damadola had been a no-go area and thus served as the main route for cross-border activities of militants. The area came into prominence after the first drone attack by the US, killing 80 people in 2004.
Athar said there were over 150 caves carved in the mountains over a period of five to seven years. By wiping out terrorists from this area, we have also dismantled their link with Afghanistan, he said.
Tariq Khan described Damadola as strategically important, pointing out that it was linked to Afghanistan, Pakistans northern district of Chitral, the main highway to China and to northwestern Swat Valley, which has been troubled by Taliban insurgency. He said the entire Bajaur and the surrounding areas were controlled from Damadola.
He said that a key terrorist namely Aurengzeb, who was involved in 21 suicide attacks in different parts of the country, was also killed during the operation. To a question, he said the house of ex-parliamentarian Sahibzada Haroon Rashid was terrorists headquarter.
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