Lahore, June 10 (ANI): One of the commanders of the Swat Operation, Major General Ijaz Awan, has said the Taliban started to arm themselves against the Pakistan Army after parliament decided to enforce the Nizam-e-Adl Regulation in Malakand Division.
In an interview with a private TV channel, he said the Taliban had made Mingora their base, and then advanced towards Buner and other adjoining areas.
Major General Awan said the Taliban in Swat and Mingora had planned to fight the military in Mingora city, and use the local population as a human shield.
He said the two areas became increasingly important to the Taliban due to their heavy populations, the Daily Times reports.
Replying to a question, he said the Taliban were scared to face the army, and felt that the only way they could win was by using the civilian population as shields.
This had restrained the security forces from using heavy weapons to avoid collateral damage, Major General Awan added.
He said the Taliban had set up fortified positions on mountains, and had dug tunnels for their residence and for storing arms and ammunitions.
Major General Awan said the Taliban had very sophisticated weaponry, including some high velocity weapons belonging to the US Army.
He said the army had captured 100 Taliban from the area under his control during Operation Rah-e-Rast, adding interrogation had revealed the positions of several caches of arms and explosives and important hideouts. (ANI)