10 Taliban, one Pakistani trooper killed in border clashes (Lead)

April 24th, 2008 - 1:31 am ICT by admin  

Islamabad, April 23 (DPA) At least 10 Taliban militants and one Pakistani paramilitary trooper were killed Wednesday in clashes on the border with Afghanistan, the Pakistani military said. “Miscreants (Taliban) attacked the check post at Daud Qilla on the Afghan side of the border in the wee hours of the morning,” a statement from army’s Inter-Services Public Relations Department said. “Reportedly, 8-10 miscreants were killed and the rest disengaged.”

Following the attack, Afghan troops pursued the Taliban into Pakistan’s tribal district of Bajaur Agency, where a border clash between them and Pakistan forces was ensued.

“At 11 a.m. local time (6 a.m.GMT) Afghan National Army troops approached our post at Nawa Pass in search of miscreants. They were informed neither (about whether) the miscreants had come towards our check post, nor (whether) they were firing from that location,” the Pakistani military said.

“Due to misunderstanding, some exchange of fire took place between Afghan National Army troops and the Frontier Corps troops on the border,” the statement said. One Frontier Corps soldier was killed and ather one was wounded.

Local commanders of the two countries’ border security forces were meeting to resolve the issue.

Local media reported that following the fighting NATO planes bombarded the area, resulting in the deaths of at least four civilians, Pakistan’s Aaj news channel reported.

However, army spokesman Major General Athar Abbas denied the report, saying the NATO planes entered Pakistani territory but did not attack. “We have no information that anybody was killed by a NATO bombardment on our soil,” Abbas told DPA.

Pakistan’s tribal region is believed to provide safe havens for the Taliban and Al Qaeda terrorists who fled to the area after the US invaded Afghanistan in 2001.

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