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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2429

Pakistan army to launch operation against Baitullah Mehsud

By Farzana Shah-Asian Tribune Correspondent in Pakistan

Rawalapindi, 17 June, (Asiantribune.com): Government has taken a decision in principle to launch a military operation against and his network said DG ISPR Major Ather Abbas in a joint-press conference with Minister of Information and Broadcasting Qamar Zaman Kaira.AAccording to ISPR, the Army has received requisite orders for launching the operation after which necessary measures are being taken by the Military in this regard.

"The necessary measures and steps which are part of a preliminary phase of the operation, the preparatory phase of the operation, that has commenced," Abbas told reporters.

Convoys of military trucks carrying tanks and heavy artillery were seen Tuesday in the nearby towns of Dera Ismail Khan and Tank which according to sources are part of the buildup for the operation against Mehsud.

But Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira stressed that the operation "has not been officially started."

Kaira said the government is prepared to weather a fresh terrorism campaign if necessary to carry out the mission to capture or kill Mehsud.

"The risk of lives is there, we have to give sacrifices, we have to pay this price and the nation is ready to give this price to get rid of this menace," Kaira said.

Abbas told reporters there were unconfirmed reports that an al-Qaida-linked Uzbek militant leader, Tahir Yuldash, was injured in a Pakistan air force strike Sunday in the Makeen area of South Waziristan.

Yuldash is the leader of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan and has survived many military operations in the tribal regions bordering Afghanistan after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United States. His group is widely regarded as having ties to al-Qaida.

Baitullah Mehsud, who is also accused of masterminding the 2007 assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto — the wife of current President Asif Ali Zardari — is blamed for the string of suicide bombings and other attacks carried out in retaliation for the Swat operation.

Meanwhile army shelled suspected militant hideouts in three villages in South Waziristan on Tuesday in response to attacks on two military checkpoints.

On the other hand military operation in Swat valley is continued against the militants.

According to ISPR press release, 13 terrorists were killed and three were apprehended in Malakand and Dir in last 24 hours.

Peochar valley has been completely secured and link up operation from Chaprial to Peochar has been completed.

Security forces captured and destroyed complete training facility at Balasar-Chaprial having 120 feet long tunnels, firing range and training area.

A terrorist Shah Sultan who was expert in making suicidal jackets has been killed in Charbagh area.

During search operation three terrorists were apprehended at Salhand near Fizaghat.

On a tip off two vehicles prepared for suicide mission have been recovered and destroyed at Dangram.

Two tunnels have been discovered and destroyed at Loi Numal in Peochar Valley and two at Rampatai.

During search operation in Gokand Banda, Sarsanai, Khairabad and Ghodanbanda cache of arms and ammunitions recovered from all four areas.

During operations upto Aligrama seven IEDs and 1 Anti Tank Mine were recovered and destroyed by Security Forces.

During search operation in Nawakili and Watakai security forces recovered cache of arms, ammunition and communication equipment.

Civil Administration including Police have become fully functional in Shangla District.

Kalam and Bahrain have been declared as curfew free zones.

During search operation on a tip regarding presence of terrorists in an area between Hayasarai and Lal Qila, security force launched on Operation. During encounter 12 terrorists were killed including important commander Abdullah.

- Asian Tribune -

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