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Pak Govt releases 100 tribesmen

world Updated: Sep 04, 2007 17:22 IST

IANS
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The Pakistan government has released at least 100 members of the Masood tribes arrested by the Army from the Wana-Tank Sharah region of South Waziristan, near the Afghanistan border, in the wake of the abduction of 150 security personnel by local tribal militants.

Assistant Political Officer of South Waziristan Khaista-ur-Rehman Tuesday told Online news agency on telephone that all the tribesmen who belong to the Masood tribes have been freed and the Wana-Tank Sharah road has also been opened to traffic. He said the tribesmen were released on a request of the Grand Tribal Jirga or tribal assembly as a goodwill gesture.

Meanwhile, jirga sources on Tuesday described the government's talks with the militants as "positive".

The security personnel were kidnapped by local militants late last week when they were proceeding towards Ladda from Wana in a convoy. The commander of the militant group Wana Baitullah Mashood has claimed that the number of security personnel kidnapped was around 300.

The militants were demanding that ten of their men arrested by security forces be set free in exchange for the release of the kidnapped security personnel.

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