PAF pounds Taliban hideouts in northwest Waziristan ahead of ground operation

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Islamabad, Oct.8 (ANI): The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has started pounding Taliban hideouts in the northwest Waziristan ahead of the military's ground operation in the area.

Pakistan Army spokesperson General Athar Abbas said the region has been cordoned-off, as the PAF has launched air strikes on Taliban locations.

"We have sealed the area and are involved in aerial targeting of Taliban locations," Major Abbas said, but he refused to disclose when the troops would actually start the ground operations.

The Financial Times quoted a Pakistani Minister as saying : "The preparations are fully in place. The timing has yet to be decided. We are in that phase where it is not a question of 'if' but 'when' an attack will take place."

"There will be very focused strikes including air strikes to soften enemy targets. Once this is achieved, the military will begin marching in," a Pakistani intelligence official said.

The United States has been pressing Pakistan to step up its operations against the Taliban and other extremist groups based in Waziristan, a remote tribal area on the border with Afghanistan, however, Islamabad has till now refrained from carrying out any major operation in the region which has become a terror safe haven over the past few years. (ANI)

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