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51 killed in fierce fighting in Pakistan's tribal region

Thousands of residents fled the scene of the fierce clashes which erupted coinciding with George W Bush's visit.

india Updated: Mar 05, 2006 22:23 IST

At least 46 terrorists and five soldiers were killed in a major offensive launched by Pakistan's security forces to wrest control of areas in the country's tribal region.

Thousands of residents fled the scene of the fierce clashes which erupted coinciding with President George W Bush's visit.

Army spokesman Major General Shaukat Sultan told reporters on Sunday that 46 terrorists, including many foreigners, and five soldiers were killed and 10 more injured in fighting in North Waziristan region since Saturday.

He did not rule out civilian casualties but did not give any details.

Earlier, Pakistan's Interior Minister Aftab Khan Sherpao said over 100 terrorists were killed in the counter-attacks by the army.

Sultan said that the local administration had now retaken control of the government buildings from the terrorists in Miranshah, the headquarters of North Waziristan.

He said 25 terrorists were killed in Miranshah and 21 others were killed in Mir Ali, another major town in the region.

"These figures are not fixed it could be more. I am not in too much hurry to say about the figures. I am not sure how many are foreigners were killed but they are mixed," he said.

The fighting erupted on Saturday after terrorists launched a massive rocket attack on government installations in Mir Ali a small town in of the North Waziristan tribal region.

Sultan confirmed the migration of the local people from the tense region to safe places.

First Published: Mar 05, 2006 22:23 IST