Pak army's air strikes against militants kill 27

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Pak army's air strikes against militants kill 27
Islamabad, Feb 25: Pakistan's military air strikes against suspected militant hideouts in the north-west have killed at least 27 people, said a BBC report.

The air strikes came a day after senior Pakistani Taliban commander Asmatullah Shaheen was reportedly shot dead in North Waziristan. Shaheen was briefly the leader of Pakistani Taliban after its chief Hakimullah Mehsud was killed last year during a US drone strike.

The attacks primarily took place in the Shawal valley and said. Fighting was also reported in South Waziristan.

The dialogues between Pakistani government and Taliban militants failed last week, after a Taliban-linked group said they killed 23 soldiers.

Government negotiators called off a planned meeting with Taliban negotiators after militants based in the Mohmand tribal area said they had killed 23 soldiers who had been abducted and held since 2010.

Those killings, and other violence in the past weeks, also triggered air strikes on suspected militant hideouts last Thursday.

"The militants had captured a stretch between South Waziristan and North Waziristan and had established training centres where they were also preparing suicide bombers," a military official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, was quoted by Reuters as saying.

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