Pakistani troops have entered another Taliban center in the war-torn tribal agency of South Waziristan. The Army said it has encountered “heavy clashes and street to street fighting” as its troops have entered the town of Ladha, which it described as a “stronghold of terrorists.” The military reported that 10 Taliban fighters were killed in the town.
Ladha is one of five major Taliban towns in South Waziristan. The military has already taken control of Kotkai and Kanigoram, is currently clearing Sararogha, and has surrounded Makeen. The military also reported that 16 Taliban fighters were killed during fighting in Sararogha.
The Pakistani military said 30 Taliban fighters have been killed during operations over the past 24 hours. No soldiers were reported killed, but eight were reported wounded. The military now claims that nearly 380 Taliban fighters and 35 soldiers have been killed since the operation to defeat the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan was launched on Oct. 15.
Yesterday, the Taliban denied that their forces have suffered heavy losses, and claimed to have conducted a tactical retreat in order to lure the Army into a trap. The Taliban are preparing to fight “a long war,” Taliban spokesman Tariq Khan told the Associated Press.
Skirmishes in Hangu, suicide bombers killed in Kohat
In the nearby district of Hangu, Pakistani troops killed four Taliban fighters after they attacked a security outpost on the border with the tribal agency of Kurram. Pakistani troops and the Taliban have clashed in Kurram and Arakzai over the past week.
In Kohat, two suicide bombers were killed after one of the bombers accidentally detonated his vest. The bomber triggered the explosion when the motorcycle he was driving on hit a bump in the road. The bombers were driving on road near a Pakistani Air Force base.