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July 4, 2011 / PTI, Islamabad / DC.
Pakistani soldiers stand guard on the first day of the three-day 'Genesis and Causes of Radicalization in Pakistan' seminar in Saidu Sharif town in Swat valley – AFP.
Thousands of Pakistani troops, backed by helicopter gunships and fighter jets, advanced on Taliban strongholds in Kurram tribal region and consolidated their positions on Monday even as hundreds of families fled the conflict zone.
Pakistani soldiers and paramilitary troops were attacking militant hideouts in Kurram Agency to eliminate and expel the rebels, the local media quoted military sources as saying.
"Taliban militants did not show any resistance," an unnamed military officer said.
The security forces advanced in mountainous areas, including Mushat, Masozai and Ali Sherzaoi, all former strongholds of the Pakistani Taliban. The troops consolidated their positions and established check posts atop mountains overlooking key roads to monitor the movement of militants.
Most of the militants had already fled their hideouts ahead of the operation, reports said. The government had notified 80 sq km in Kurram Agency as a conflict zone a fortnight ago.
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