Pak Frontier Coprs official says Bajaur will be rid of Taliban, Qaeda in 2 months

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Khar (Pakistan), Sept 27 : The Taliban and Al Qaeda network in Pakistan's Bajaur Agency will be demolished within two months from now, and there has been a significant improvement in recent weeks in the fight against the insurgents and extremists in the area, said Bajaur Agency's FC Inspector General Maj Gen Tariq Khan.

"My timeframe for Bajaur is anything from between one-and-a-half to two months to bring about stability," Khan said while speaking to media persons on a specially orgainsed trip to the area.

He said that in total there were only 2000 extremists in the area, including Afghans, Uzbeks and Arabs as well as Pakistani Taliban, and once they were eliminated, 65 percent of the problem of terrorism in the country would be resolved, reported the Daily Times.

"If they lose here, they've lost almost everything," he added.

On the occasion, the FC officials paraded 10 blindfolded and handcuffed men said to be Taliban fighters - arrested during the operation - before the reporters who joined the trip. Khan also showed reporters photos of tunnel systems and trenches, suggesting the Taliban were well established in the region that is considered a likely hiding place for top Al Qaeda leaders including Osama Bin Laden.

Khan said troops had killed more than 1000 Taliban and injured 2000 others since the offensive began in early August. According to him, five top Al Qaeda and Taliban commanders were among those killed in the month-long operation, including four foreigners - Egyptian Abu Saeed Al-Masri, Arab Abu Suleiman, Uzbek Mullah Mansoor, and an Afghan commander called Manaras.

The fifth was a son of Faqir Mohammad, the top Taliban commander in the region. Faqir himself was believed to be injured. Some 63 troops had died and 212 were injured in the operation so far, Khan said.

ANI

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