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Pak security forces kill 11 militants

world Updated: Aug 21, 2009 23:05 IST

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Pakistani security forces backed by helicopter gunships on Friday killed 11 militants and destroyed their hideout in the troubled Swat valley and other parts of the Malakand division where over 60 insurgents, including a cousin and a brother-in-law of local Taliban chief Maulana Fazlullah, also surrendered.

In the Malakand division, troops continued search and clearance operations amid the return of people displaced by the operations against the Taliban. Security forces captured 32 militants across Malakand while four soldiers were injured in clashes with rebels, the military said.

Two gunship helicopters shelled Taliban strongholds in three areas of Mohmand Agency, killing 11 militants. Artillery shells were fired at militant hideouts from the Frontier Corps headquarters at Ghalanai, the main town in the tribal region. The shelling continued for four hours.

Troops apprehended 11 suspects and recovered three vehicles during a clearance operation at Tiligram in Swat, a scenic valley located 160 km from Islamabad.

Six suspects were captured when troops found a training camp during a search. Four kg of explosives and 200 dummy rifles were seized from the camp, a military statement said.

Meanwhile, an American drone on Friday struck the suspected hideout of Afghan Taliban warlord Sirajuddin Haqqani in north Waziristan, killing 13 militants, most of them from Afghanistan.