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Four Pakistani soldiers killed in clash with militants: military

Four Pakistani soldiers were killed in a clash with militants in the northwestern tribal region near the Afghan border, the military said on Sunday.

A Pakistani army soldier stands guard at a market in Miranshah, North Waziristan, near the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan, on January 27, 2019
A Pakistani army soldier stands guard at a market in Miranshah, North Waziristan, near the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan, on January 27, 2019

The incident took place in the turbulent town of Miranshah, the capital of North Waziristan District, where several military operations have been launched in recent years against homegrown and foreign militants.

The latest clash occurred when security forces were conducting an operation against the hideouts of suspected militants in the area.

“As soon as the troops cordoned off the area” they came under fire, the military said in a statement. “All dug-out terrorists were shot down by security forces,” but during the exchange of fire “four soldiers embraced shahadat”, or martyrdom, it said.

Four “terrorists” were also killed in the clash, the statement added.

Pakistan has been battling a homegrown Islamist insurgency for more than a decade, with thousands of civilians and security personnel killed in extremist attacks.

Violence in Pakistan has declined following army offensives in the region, but militant groups are still able to carry out isolated attacks. The area remains notorious for the availability of cheap guns, drugs, and smuggled goods. AFP

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