Total Pageviews

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

No Sign Of Osama As Taliban Routed

12:16pm UK, Tuesday September 02, 2008
Pakistan's army claims to have routed Taliban militants in a stronghold near the Afghan border but found no sign of Osama bin Laden or al Qaeda's second-in-command Ayman al Zawahiri.

No sign of Osama bin Laden or Ayman al-Zawahri
The government ordered a halt to the operation to allow some of the 300,000 families who fled airstrikes and combat in the Bajur region to return home for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
US officials had stepped up calls for Pakistan to put more pressure on militants using bases in its remote tribal areas to mount cross-border attacks also on Nato and government troops in Afghanistan.
Some analysts have warned that the pause in the weeks-long Bajur operation would only allow the militants to regroup.
But Pakistani officials said their forces had killed some 560 Pakistani and foreign fighters and thwarted a push to make Bajur into a militant fortress.
Army spokesman Major General Athar Abbas said about 20 members of the security forces died and 30 were missing.
"In our view, the back has been broken. Main leaders are on the run and the people of the area are now openly defying whatever the militants had achieved there."
Officials including former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf have mentioned Bajur as a possible hiding place for Bin Laden or Zawahiri.
Interior Ministry chief Rehman Malik said authorities also received a report that Zawahiri's wife had been in the neighboring tribal region of Mohmand.
Pakistani forces stormed the location but didn't find the couple, he said.

No comments: