Five militants killed in Pakistan air raids

Islamabad: At least five suspected militants were killed and as many militant hideouts were destroyed after jet fighters pounded parts of Pakistan’s tribal region of North Waziristan early Saturday.

According to the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR),on facing fire and opposition from inside the Miramshah town and Boya village, air strikes were launched to eliminate militants, Dawn news reported.

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Militant hideouts, caves and a huge cache of arms and ammunition were also destroyed as militants were killed in the air strikes. Most of the killed militants were reportedly Uzbeks.

A soldier was also killed when an improvised explosive device (IED) exploded during a clearance operation.

Over 400 suspected militants, mostly foreigners, have been killed so far during the security operation while at least 19 IED-making factories have also been unearthed by security forces in parts of Miramshah, the main town in North Waziristan.

Most of the houses in Miramshah contained IEDs and most of the roads in the area were planted with explosives and landmines, sources said.

Pakistan had been under mounting pressure to go after the militants in North Waziristan, which the army said had been turned into a major sanctuary for local and foreign militants, Xinhua reported.

The UN refugee agency said nearly 70,000 locals have crossed into Afghanistan from North Waziristan.