In a fresh offensive, military warplanes pounded hideouts of Taliban insurgents in the Mamozai area of Upper Orakzai Agency on Friday, killing 12 militants and destroying their bases.
Officials confirmed that security forces were advancing along the Ali Khel area of Mamozai after fighter jets bombed militants’ positions.
“Warplanes targeted the bases in Botakhel and Toursemat areas for nearly an hour while ground forces continued their advance in the Khwa Darra and Sangarh areas,” a security official told The Express Tribune.
Several militants were reported to have fled Mamozai after sustaining injuries during targeted ground strikes.
Security forces had earlier claimed to have cleared Lower Orakzai Agency of insurgents. However, the Mamozai area remains a stronghold of insurgents due to its difficult mountainous terrain.
The area, known for militant sanctuaries, borders the troubled Tirah Valley of neighbouring Khyber Agency which results in continuous movement of fighters across the border.
The latest operation is aimed at removing militant hideouts from the remaining parts of Upper Orakzai Agency.
Security forces involved in the operation are conducting search of the area after clearing it of militants.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 11th, 2012.