A key Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) commander and his accomplice have been killed during clash with security forces in Kurram Agency on Tuesday.
According to security sources, commander Gul was TTP’s naib-emir in Hangu, Orakzai and Kurram Agency.
Earlier today, four troops embraced martyrdom when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb in the village of Warmagai in Kurram, one of the seven autonomous tribal districts bordering Afghanistan where militants rose up against the Pakistani state in 2004.
“At least four soldiers were martyred when a bomb planted on a roadside hit a security forces convoy,” a senior security official told a foreign news agency.
Another official confirmed the attack and casualties, and said that immediately after the bombing security forces launched asearch operation in which two militants were killed and three others wounded.
The vehicle belonged to a bomb-disposal squad whose mission was to travel ahead of a convoy to clear the road, the secondofficial said.
Pakistan began a long-awaited push to clear insurgent bases from the North Waziristan tribal district last June after a bloody Taliban attack on Karachi airport finally sank faltering peace talks.
The army has intensified its offensive since the Taliban’s massacre of 153 people, 134 of them children, in a school in the northwestern city of Peshawar in December.
The semi-autonomous tribal areas on the Afghan border became a hideout for Islamist militants of all stripes in the aftermath of the US-led invasion of Afghanistan in 2001.
Meanwhile, police say a street patrol in Mansehra district was struck by a bomb blast that killed two officers.
No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack but suspicion likely is to fall on the local Taliban who have been attacking the state in a bid to install their own harsh brand of Islamic law, killing thousands of fellow Pakistanis.