Military: Airstrikes kill 20 militants

Oct. 16, 2009 at 12:05 AM
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ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, Oct. 15 (UPI) -- Pakistani airstrikes killed more than 20 militants in South Waziristan as the country convulsed in a wave of terror attacks, the military said.

Thursday's airstrikes, the third in as many days, were conducted by jet fighters and attack helicopters, a senior military official told CNN. The official said the attacks targeted hideouts in and around the villages of Ladha, Makeen, Nawaz Kot and Sararogha. An attack Wednesday reportedly killed eight people.

Pakistani officials have said the Taliban, al-Qaida and other terror groups are holed up in the South Waziristan tribal region and have blamed them for the escalating violence in the country. A ground assault by the army against these groups is reportedly imminent.

Baitullah Mehsud, leader of the Pakistani Taliban, was killed in South Waziristan in August in a suspected U.S. drone attack.

Also Thursday, militants unleashed a wave of attacks in three cities, including Lahore, capital of the Punjab province. These attacks killed more than 30 people, including police officers. About 10 militants also died in these attacks.

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