Islamabad, Nov.6 (ANI): The Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) chief Hakimullah Mehsud has warned his fighters from running away from the war against the security forces, saying those who turn their back from the duty would go to 'hell.'
"Remember this is the commandment of God that once fighting starts with the enemy, you cannot leave the battlefield without permission from your commander, and don't look for excuses to run away from the fighting. Those, who do run away, will go to hell," Mehsud told his followers in a radio message, which was intercepted by the security officials.
"We are in Jihad and we should not pay heed to the whispers of Satan. We should sacrifice our lives for Islam so that we can feel pride on the day of judgment," Mehsud added.
Informing media persons about the radio intercepts, intelligence officials said Mehsud's message signifies that hordes of insurgents are running away from the massive offensive launched by the Pakistan Army in South Waziristan, the Taliban's den.
Meanwhile, 28 more militants were reportedly killed in Taliban strongholds of Ladha and Makeen in South Waziristan.
Five officials were also killed during an intense gun battle with the insurgents in the region, The News reports.
Military sources said security forces nabbed five more extremists from the region, where the operation Rah-e-Nijat entered its 21st day.
While the troops have claimed huge success in the operation, saying they have consolidated their position in the region, the Taliban, however, claimed that their withdrawal from their former strongholds was a tactical move, as they were planning to launch scattered attacks on security forces.
A self-proclaimed spokesperson of the TTP, Azam Tariq had earlier told a foreign news agency that the banned outfit was fully prepared to take on the challenge and that it was drawing the troops into a trap.
"We are prepared for a long war. The areas we are withdrawing from, and the ones the army is claiming to have won, are being vacated by us as part of a strategy. The strategy is to lure the army into a trap, and then fight a long war," Tariq said.
He also rejected the military's claims of killing hundreds of insurgents saying only 11 of his associates have been killed so far in the war.(ANI)