Pakistani air force kills 32 in precision strikes
Pakistan used jet fighters to do some precision air strikes near the Afghan border, killing 32. The targeted people were key commanders of a terrorist group. The official however did not disclose names of the commanders killed in the strikes. “There were confirmed reports that terrorists involved in recent attacks including a blast at an internally displaced persons (IDP) camp in Peshawar, bomb attacks in Mohmand and Bajaur tribal regions … and attacks on security forces convoys in NWA (North Waziristan), were hiding in these hideouts”, the official added. An intelligence official in North Waziristan said the strikes were carried out in Miranshah, the main town of North Waziristan, Mir Ali, Datta Khel and Ghulam Ali areas. There were reports of some civilian casualties including women and children but the security official did not confirm them. Independent verification of the toll and identity of the dead was not possible as journalists are not allowed to enter the area. North Waziristan is one of the seven semi-autonomous tribal areas, known as a stronghold of Taliban and Al-Qaeda-linked militants. Washington calls the region the most dangerous place in the world. The latest attack comes weeks after the Pakistani Taliban formally ended a ceasefire called to promote talks with the government aimed at ending the militants’ bloody seven-year insurgency. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s government began negotiations with the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) through intermediaries in February, with the ceasefire beginning March 1. Since the TTP launched their insurgency in 2007, more than 6,800 people have been killed in bomb and gun attacks around Pakistan, according to an AFP tally.