Under intense US pressure to stop Taliban's advance towards the federal capital, Pakistani troops intensified operations against militants in the NWFP killing over 50 of them, even as the Swat talks broker said the offensive rendered the peace accord "worthless".
Helicopter gunships pounded Taliban hideouts as security forces continued their operations for the second day today in NWFP's lower Dir district, which adjoins Swat and is covered by the peace deal between radicals and the government.
As US pressure built up on Islamabad to take steps to safeguard its nuclear arsenals, President Asif Ali Zardari ruled out the possibility of his country's atomic weapons falling into the hands of Taliban.
"Pakistan's nuclear installations are in safe hands and under extra security," Zardari said in an interview to foreign media.
Zardari also called for more foreign support for 'cash-strapped' Pakistan to prevent any danger of its nuclear arsenal falling into the hands of Al-Qaeda and its allies.
Meanwhile, in another sign of mounting Western concern, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown was to meet Pakistani leaders, including Zardari, tonight.
Protesting the operations in Dir, Taliban suspended talks with the government, with Tehrik-e-Nifaz-e-Shariah Muhammadi (TNSM) spokesman Izzat Khan saying peace deal with the government was now "worthless".