13 militants die in strikes as Operation Khyber-4 progresses

Soldier embraces martyrdom
Tariq Saeed

Peshawar

The Pakistan Air Force jet fighters supported by the Army Aviation and Artillery went for incessant bombings on the terrorists hideouts in Rajgal valley of the troubled Khyber agency on Thursday mowing down at least 13 militants and destroyed number of their hideouts as the Operation Khyber 4 initiated few days back progressed. However, a soldier also embraced Shahadat in exchange of fire with the trouble makers.
Reports reaching here and confirmed by the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) said the Operation Khyber 4 was progressing effectively and the Security forces backed by the PAF and Army Aviation war birds Thursday struck hard on the militants positions in the far-flung areas of the Khyber agency inflicting heavy losses on them. While number of their hideouts were flattened in the action as many as 13 terrorist have also been killed though a soldier named Abdul Jabbar embraced martyrdom in the line of duty.
The forces also defused many Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) planted by the militants at various places to target the forces and obstruct the operation The Security forces are reported to be tightening noose against the insurgents and troops including the Special Services Group have cleared 90 square km area.
“Operation Khyber-4 progressing as planned. Advancing from multiple directions troops including special services group have cleared 90 square km area and now squeezing the terrorists. Terrorists had laid number of IEDs which have been detected, recovered and neutralized by Pak Army Engineers Counter IED teams. Many terrorist hideouts have been destroyed in targeted strikes by PAF, Army Aviation and Artillery. So far 13 terrorists have been killed and 6 injured. During exchange of fire a soldier Sepoy Abdul Jabbar has laid his life for the motherland. Operation continues as part of Operation Radd-ul-Fasaad”. The ISPR communiqué said.
The security forces that had initiated Operation titled Zerb-e-Azb against the trouble makers challenging the state writ in North Waziristan agency more than three years back on June 15 2014, it may be recalled had also kicked off Operation Khyber, the second leg of Operation Zerb-e-Azb on October 14, 2015 and since then has been coming hard on the miscreants through ground and air offensives. In the meanwhile Operation Khyber Two Khyber and Khyber Three were also launched later on against the elements challenging the writ of the state over the years.
However, the restive Tiraah valley and Rajgal areas continues to be the most troubled spot in the Khyber agency where not only the Taliban militants regrouped in the backdrop of operation Zerb-e-Azb and Operation Khyber, but also there are pockets of local militants belonging to Lashker-e-Islam of cleric turned militant Mangal Bagh who often lend support to Taliban.
The military sources conducting surgery in the region for the last about three years, have although cleared most of the area in Khyber agency, still there are pockets where they have been facing resistance from the alleged terrorists with hilly terrain Tiraah being the major one and the insurgents off and on launch ambushes on the security forces and their check posts.

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