Pakistan security forces killed 14 militants and captured 29 more in fresh operations today in the restive Swat valley as continued heavy resistance from the Taliban seems to have bogged down the army in the area.
The prolonged timeframe that troops are taking to flush out militants apparently is hitting the army’s plans for a massive offensive on the Pakistan Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud and Al-qaeda cadres.
The Pakistani forces began their operations in Swat, Buner and Dir in April and its spokesman Maj. Gen. Atthar Abbas had claimed that it would be only few weeks for the army to take the measure of Taliban.
But skirmishes have continued raising fears that Taliban top brass has escaped from the area and its cadres are waging a guerilla warfare.
Besides Swat, the Pakistani forces are also facing stiff resistance in the adjoining Buner district. Army had planned to wrap up these operations in the restive northwest to use the troops to mount a massive manhunt for Mehsud in South Waziristan.
Ten militants were killed by troops during a search operation at Sappari Kandao, Koto Banda and Shadas in Buner district, the military said in a statement.