PESHAWAR: At least four soldiers and several militants were killed in separate clashes involving a gunfight and roadside bombings in Pakistan’s restive Tribal Region, officials said on Tuesday.
Sources said militants attacked a checkpost in the Shirin Dara area of Orakzai, resulting in a clash that also left several militants and six security personnel injured.
The attack was successfully repulsed.
Some of the injured security personnel are said to be in critical condition.
The information could not be independently verified as journalists have restricted access in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata).
Tuesday's clash comes as the army is engaged in an offensive against local and foreign militants in the northwestern tribal regions of North Waziristan and Khyber.
Orakzai is one of Pakistan’s seven semi-autonomous tribal regions in the area, where Pakistani Taliban and Al Qaeda-linked militants are said to have carved out strongholds.
Also read: Bara sees another military offensive
Two soldiers killed, four injured in blast near Bannu
At least two people were killed and four others were injured in a bombing targeting a security forces vehicle near Peshawar's Bannu district on Tuesday.
According to sources, the vehicle was travelling from Bannu towards the Frontier Region of Jani Khel when it was targeted by what appears to be an Improvised Explosive Device (IED).
The northwestern town of Bannu, which stands at the gateway to the semi-autonomous Waziristan tribal region, is 150 kilometres southwest of Peshawar, the capital of KP.
The town has witnessed a number of attacks and was the scene of a massive jail break in April 2012 during which 384 prisoners escaped from its central prison.
Nine militants killed in Bara Agency clash
At least nine militants were killed and 12 others injured on Tuesday in a clash between security forces and militants in the Akakhel area of Bara Agency.
According to sources, four key militant commanders have also surrendered to the authorities following the clash.
The plains of Bara hold strategic significance for militant groups as they connect the agency to the outskirts of Peshawar. The area was being used by militants to put pressure on the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's capital. Police and military posts in and around Peshawar have repeatedly came under attack.
The clash between militants and security forces comes as Pakistan's military continue with their intelligence-driven operation ‘Khyber-1’, aimed at targetting militant hideouts in areas under Mangal Bagh-led group’s control in Tirah and Bara.
135 militants killed in Operation 'Khyber-1'
Security forces are successfully moving forward with their military offensive code named operation ‘Khyber-1’ which is aimed at flushing out militants from Khyber Agency.
According to sources, approximately 135 militants have been killed whereas 250 have been arrested, including some key commanders, since the start of the operation.
Sources said those killed were said to belong to various militants groups and organizations that are involved in subversive activities in various parts of the country.
Military sources told Dawn that the operation is progressing according to plan and will continue till the entire agency is cleared from all militant hideouts.
Pakistan's military launched the operation ‘Khyber-1’ last month with air strikes against LI hideouts in areas under the Mangal Bagh-led group’s control in Tirah and Bara.
The latest operation was launched amidst Zarb-i-Azb, a full-fledged military operation being conducted by the army against Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and other militants in the North Waziristan tribal region.