Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Twenty-three terrorists killed in Bara operation

Twenty-three terrorists killed in Bara operation

Wednesday, 25 Nov, 2009
The aim of the assault was to capture mountain heights and strategic locations from the militants who had been attacking Peshawar. —Reuters/File Photo

LANDI KOTAL: Security forces killed at least 23 terrorists during a fresh operation in Bara tehsil of Khyber Agency on Tuesday.

The troops were backed by helicopters, tanks, armoured personnel carriers and heavy artillery.

A press release issued by the Frontier Corps media cell in Jamrud said that during the day-long operation, codenamed ‘Khwakh Ba De Sham’ at least 23 terrorists were killed and 36 suspects arrested. Twelve explosives-laden vehicles were destroyed and a huge quantity of arms and ammunitions seized in different localities of Bara.

It said that an important base of Lashkar-i-Islam in Gurgurai was taken over by security forces without any significant resistance. Local officials say that LI militants used the base for most of their attacks.

The area also has a network of caves, training camps, ammunition dumps and private jails.

Security forces imposed a curfew in Bara on Tuesday and plugged all points of entry from Orakzai Agency and Tirah to prevent terrorists’ infiltration and escape.

Troops erected barricades at Mamanri, Chora, Sheen Kamar and Zawa, destroyed an illegal Lashkar-i-Islam checkpoint in Merikhel area of Akkakhel and set up their own post.

Troops entered the remote village of Chora in Jamrud tehsil and were warmly welcomed by local people. Chora region had become a terrorist hub and was used for launching rocket attacks on security forces.

In a related development, the army moved tanks into central Kurram tribal region in an area adjacent to Khyber and Orakzai agencies, adds our Peshawar Bureau.

Sources told Dawn by phone that a column of tanks was seen heading towards central Kurram on Tuesday and preparations seemed to be under way for a full-scale offensive in the area considered to be a safe haven of militants.

Well-placed sources said that troops were planning a three-pronged incursion into Tirah area which is linked to Kurram, Orakzai and Khyber. The region with forests and rough terrain is the most backward part of Fata.

Meanwhile, a resident of Alizai town in Lower Kurram said that tanks were pounding at militants’ positions and hilltops along the main Thall-Parachinar road. Before troop mobilisation, the political administration had held talks with local elders and banned display of weapons in parts of central Kurram.

Also on Tuesday, local authorities announced a curfew in Sadda town till Eid and asked residents to stay indoors.


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