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At least 15 militants killed near Pakistan-Afghan border

world Updated: Jan 19, 2009 05:19 IST

IANS
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Paramilitary troops killed at least 15 Islamist militants in the troubled north-western tribal region close to the Afghan border, the military and officials said on Sunday.

Fifteen rebels were killed in a raid by the Frontier Corps (FC) soldiers on a militant stronghold in Darwazgai area of Mohmand tribal district, according to an FC statement.

One security official had died in the operation, the statement said.

The intense gunfights took place on Saturday as the security forces moved to take out militant positions in the area, said a local intelligence official on phone.

The official said the fighting stopped shortly after nightfall.

More than 600 militants, mostly Afghan Taliban, attacked a paramilitary fort in Mohmand last week. The government forces repulsed the attack and killed at least 40 fighters. Six soldiers also died in the combat.

Mohmand borders the restive Bajaur tribal district, a known Al-Qaeda and Taliban sanctuary where the military had claimed killing more than 1,500 militants in a major offensive launched in August 2008.