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Pak army enters Taliban den

Pakistani forces on Saturday stormed into Mingora, the main town of Swat valley, clearing parts of it after pitched street battles with Taliban fighters, killing 17 of them.

world Updated: May 23, 2009 22:46 IST

Pakistani forces on Saturday stormed into Mingora, the main town of Swat valley, clearing parts of it after pitched street battles with Taliban fighters, killing 17 of them.

As the army operations against Taliban gained momentum, fissures appeared in Pakistan's top leadership on the issue, with Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani saying that the security forces have no plans to launch military operations against Taliban in Waziristan or any other part of the restive tribal belt in NWFP.

After a nearly a week-long siege of Mingora, Pakistani forces entered the town under cover of heavy shelling and firing by tanks.

Military spokesman Maj Gen Athar Abbas said parts of the town had been cleared after street-to-street fightings in which 17 militants, including an important commander had been killed.