Tirah Valley clash leaves 14 militants, 4 security officials dead

Published: April 5, 2013
Email
A Pakistani army soldier stands guard  during a patrol in Pakka village in Kurram Tribal Agency December 18, 2012. PHOTO: REUTERS

A Pakistani army soldier stands guard during a patrol in Pakka village in Kurram Tribal Agency December 18, 2012. PHOTO: REUTERS

At least 14 militants and four security officials were killed during a clash in the Tirah Valley on Friday, reported Express News.

Fighting between government soldiers and militants in the valley, which has strategically important routes into Afghanistan, has been underway for several months, but intensified recently with militants seizing control of key areas.

As general elections approach, security officials are now concerned that the routes that lead to Peshawar are also under the control of militants.

Around 40,000 residents of Tirah Valley have fled their homes after fighting in the last few weeks.

The humanitarian community is setting up operations to register the 40,000 IDPs and providing assistance at the New Durrani, Jalozai and Togh Sarai IDP camps

The conflict is a complicated one, involving at least three militant groups that also have internal divisions –  the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, the Lashkar-e-Islam and the Ansarul Islam.

The LI and the AI have been battling each other for over seven years in the Bara tehsil of Khyber Agency, with turf wars being waged based on sectarian grounds.

The area became a stronghold of the TTP after operations were launched in the nearby Orakzai and Kurram tribal agencies.

The LI then sought an alliance with the TTP and the AI, previously a banned outfit, which was later considered a tribal militia that was protecting boundaries of the valley from “foreign influence”.

In June last year, the TTP took over the majority area held by the Kukikhel tribe, while reports of the presence of the Taliban from as far as the Mohmand Agency also surfaced. Hundreds of people were reportedly killed; however, because of the area being isolated, little information made it to the mainstream media, till almost 90 per cent of the valley went into the TTP’s hands.

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (15)

  • Voice of D.I.khan
    Apr 5, 2013 - 5:44PM

    Leaders like Molana should be convicted for our Security Forces killings. Believe me, then terrorism will vanish in no time. Such leaders are supporting terrorism.

    Recommend

  • tariq khan
    Apr 5, 2013 - 5:53PM

    kill them bravo pak army

    Recommend

  • Nadir
    Apr 5, 2013 - 6:27PM

    Wow! Tirah Valley finally makes the news!

    Recommend

  • Stranger
    Apr 5, 2013 - 6:45PM

    In the long run its good if Pak becomes more close to India than with Afghanistan or Iran. Ind and Pak have much more in common than Pak + Iran or Pak + some other country.

    Recommend

  • Javed Afridi
    Apr 5, 2013 - 7:14PM

    @Stranger: India and Pakistani indeed has much in common but Pakistan and Afghanistan are one. The irony is that we’ve always been brave at home shedding our own blood all our lives.

    Recommend

  • Moiz Hussain
    Apr 5, 2013 - 7:59PM

    “AI, previously a banned outfit, which was later considered a tribal militia that was protecting boundaries of the valley from “foreign influence”.”

    Until we stop using these proxies for strategic depth and defending our borders, we shall never have peace in the region. I don’t understand why Pak Army is always so insistent in using these religio-tribal groups and cannot just simply hire new foot-soldiers to patrol the border.

    Recommend

  • Apr 5, 2013 - 8:28PM

    We sincerely commend Pakistan’s stance against terrorism. These terrorist organizations have been fully focused on destabilizing the nation of Pakistan with their acts of terror. We praise the bravery and courage shown by the Pakistani security forces. Thousands of innocent lives have been lost due to the acts of terror inside Pakistan! But it is our shared will and desire to defeat terrorism that gives us the courage to continue our war against these terrorist organizations. We hope to continue our partnership for the sake of negating the threat posed by these terrorist organizations. We’re committed to restoring peace in the region, and hope to remain unified against our common enemies. We restate what Richard G. Olson, U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan, said recently: “The United States recognizes the enormous sacrifices made by the people of Pakistan, especially your security forces. We will continue in our joint efforts to counter extremism, combat terrorism, and protect both our peoples from the scourge of senseless violence.”

    Our sincerest and heartfelt condolences go out to the families of these brave soldiers who died for their country.

    Ali Khan

    Recommend

  • jg
    Apr 5, 2013 - 8:30PM

    lets hope military executes military ops to cleanse tirah of these animals once and for all

    Recommend

  • A J Khan
    Apr 5, 2013 - 8:33PM

    I feel so bad for these young soldiers who are dying for the ungrateful, corrupt and undeserving people of Pakistan. While these young men are laying their lives to protect the lives of corrupt bureaucrats, Judges,Lawyers, politicians and media.
    My advice is that unless some Judges, Lawyers, Bureaucrats , media persons join the forces in battle, they should stop any further action.Recommend

  • Skintaj
    Apr 5, 2013 - 11:13PM

    I am happy that 14 terrotist were wiped off. But also I am saddened by the Martyre of 4 soldiers. Our Army needs more hard training to tackle these savags!!

    Recommend

  • rkfromny
    Apr 5, 2013 - 11:45PM

    this means american released some aid and weapons to the ISI….

    Recommend

  • Raymond
    Apr 5, 2013 - 11:50PM

    Pakistanis are yet to realise that their army has last more soldiers to the fanatics inside Pakistan than to any outside enemy. Infact the so called outside enemy safely returned ninety thousand PoWs in 1971.

    Recommend

  • Foreign Leg
    Apr 5, 2013 - 11:55PM

    I would love to have some of the stuff these Centcom guys have.

    Recommend

  • khattak
    Apr 6, 2013 - 1:43AM

    @A J Khan,,,,,please do not feel bad for the of army soldiers as they are doing a job they are paid for. How about those brain washed jobless madrassa youth who fight & are killed for free(promised only paradise)? Remember that is our first line of defence costing us nothing.

    Recommend

  • Rex Minor
    Apr 10, 2013 - 12:41AM

    @tariq khan:

    Tirah is a trap which lures warriors and soldiers to death. The mountains need human blood for survival and have always received its share over the centuries. Read history and read it well. Those who will be succssful in these mountains will rule the land beyond Islamabad. The battles for the massive lethal equipment has just started: You name has all the right credentials to join in and win yourself a place in heavens.

    Rex Minor

    Recommend

More in K-P