8 militants killed in military operation in northwest Pakistan
By Aamir Latif
KARACHI, Pakistan (AA) – Pakistan Army said on Thursday that eight militants were killed in a military operation in the northwestern South Waziristan tribal region, adding that two children were also killed during the exchange of fire with the terrorists.
The operation was carried out on the basis of a tip in the remote Zinghara area of South Waziristan, which borders Afghanistan and was once a stronghold of the Pakistani Taliban's umbrella organization, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).
"Upon the presence of information of terrorists in the Zinghara area of South Waziristan, security forces carried out an operation. During intense exchange of fire between security forces and terrorists including mortar fire, eight terrorists have been killed, whereas two soldiers are injured," said a statement issued by Pakistan Army’s media wing.
"Unfortunately, two children embraced martyrdom during the exchange of fire," the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) statement added, without providing further details, including the affiliation of the killed militants.
South Waziristan, the TTP's birthplace, had long been a hotbed of militancy, but remained relatively quiet in recent years, following a series of military operations since 2009.
Pakistan has seen an uptick in attacks on security forces, mainly in the northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, since the Afghan Taliban reclaimed power in neighboring Afghanistan.
Islamabad accuses Afghanistan-based TTP militants of attacking security forces and demands of Kabul not allow the militant network to use its soil as a launch pad. Afghanistan denies the charge.