Several Taliban insurgents killed as PAF pound Mehsud's stronghold in South Waziristan

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Islamabad, July 13 (ANI): The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) continued to pound suspected Taliban hideouts in South Waziristan killing scores of militants.

According to sources, fighter jets bombarded terror training centers and other suspected installations of the Taliban in Maulvi Khan Serai, Old Serwekai and Berwand areas considered to be Baitullah Mehsud's stronghold.

Residents said at least eight extremists were killed in an attack on a training centre in Maulvi Khan Serai on Sunday.

It is believed that the sudden surge in air strikes is primarily aimed at dismantling the Taliban before the launch of a full scale military offensive in the region.

Meanwhile, security forces have reportedly started moving further inwards in the North West Frontier Province (NWFP).

Troops backed by tanks were seen heading towards some areas in Bannu district and the adjacent Frontier Region where an operation had been carried out recently, The Dawn reports.

In yet another significant move, pro-government militant commander Turkistan Bhittani pulled his army out of the Tank city and has reportedly moved towards Jandola.

"Tank was practically controlled by Bhittani till Saturday. His people conducted raids in the city and outskirts in search of Baitullah's people.

Soon after the arrival of army in Tank on Saturday, Bhittani's people disappeared," residents said, adding: "Baitullah's men have either left Tank or gone underground."

A statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) claimed that security forces killed one insurgent and arrested 16 others in raids carried out on Saturday and Sunday. (ANI)

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