No reports have filtered out from North Waziristan that suggests an on ground encounter or air sorties by the security forces on the militants hideouts. It is being reported that the military has cleared out more than 40% of North Waziristan from the militants and sixty percent known militant hideouts have been destroyed in PAF airstrikes since the start of offensive.
In a third such drone strike in this month, the US managed to terminate at least six suspected militants in Dargah Mandi, Tor Khel area, Miranshah. According to intelligence sources situated in North Waziristan, the six missiles fired by the UAV hit a compound and a vehicle. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a condemnation statement and termed these strikes as the violation of sovereignty and territorial integrity of Pakistan. It further said that the drone strikes have a negative impact on the government’s efforts to bring peace and stability in Pakistan and the region.
An unidentified gunman trespassed into a house in Hangu and killed seven members of a family. The victims were Internally Displaced Person of the Ali Khel Tribe in Orakzai Agency. As suggested by media reports, the killings seem to be sectarian motivated.
Internally Displaced Person (IDP)
The curfew in different parts of North Waziristan has been relaxed on the fourth day of the ongoing operation to ensure that the civilians can leave for safer areas. The people of Mir Ali and Razmak have been given three days by the authorities to move towards the safer region. To ensure that the tribals have been completely evacuated, the military sources are asserting that ground operations in the main towns of North Waziristan agency will start next week.
The shortage of vehicles in the afflicted zones is making the evacuation to the IDP camps difficult for those with families. To ensure the availability of vehicles, the authorities have also sent scores of vehicle to the different areas of North Waziristan, so that the people can safely move out when the curfew hours are relaxed.
Mr. Abdul Qadir Baloch, the government official entrusted to look after the IDP situation confirmed that 100,000 people have already been shifted and settled in the safer places in North Waziristan area. Extensive tent villages have been set for the IDPs where all the basic facilities have also been provided.
Mr. Janan Mosazai, the ambassador of Afghanistan held a meeting with COAS General Raheel Sharif at GHQ Rawalpindi. Various issues of mutual interest were discussed in this meeting including the measures to improve the security of Durrand Line. General Raheel also requested Afghan defence authorities to wipe out the safe havens of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in the Kunar and Nooristan provinces of Afghanistan. In response, Mr. Mosazai assured full cooperation to Pakistan in Operation Zarb-e-Azb.
In a meeting with the Information Minister, Mr. Pervaiz Rasheed, the British High Commissioner to Pakistan, Mr. Phillip Barton assured Britain’s full support in countering extremism and terrorism from Pakistan. Mr. Rasheed said that Pakistan has sacrificed a lot in war on terror, and it must be duly recognized by the international community.
The Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Legislative Assembly and Punjab Assembly passed resolutions in support of Operation Zarb-e-Azb. The Sindh government has also decided to seek help from UNHCR in the registration of IDPs fleeing from North Waziristan and arriving in the province of Sindh.
Contributing Reporter: Atiq Durrani
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