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Pakistani Army chief visits Swat

Pakistani Army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani Thursday paid a surprise visit to Swat in the country's troubled northwest where the security forces are engaged in an offensive against the Taliban that has so far resulted in the deaths of more than 800 militants.

world Updated: May 14, 2009 17:43 IST

Pakistani Army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani Thursday paid a surprise visit to Swat in the country's troubled northwest where the security forces are engaged in an offensive against the Taliban that has so far resulted in the deaths of more than 800 militants.

Quoting sources, Geo TV said Kayani met the military commanders leading the troops in the fighting. He was also briefed about the progress made in the operation.

The visit, a clear indication that the military was making headway against the Taliban, came a day after heliborne troops captured Peochar, the headquarters of Swat Taliban commander Maulana Fazlullah.

Fazlullah is the son-in-law of Taliban-backed radical cleric Sufi Mohammad who had brokered a controversial peace accord with the NWFP government and whose violation by the militants had prompted the military action April 26.

The operations had begun in the Lower Dir district to the west of Swat and later spread to Buner, which is just 100 km from Islamabad.