47 killed in Pakistan violenceAugust 15th, 2008 - 11:13 pm ICT by IANS
Islamabad, Aug 15 (DPA) At least 47 people were killed Friday in sectarian violence and clashes between security forces and pro-Taliban militants in Pakistan’s restive tribal region bordering Afghanistan, officials said. The rival Shia and Sunni tribesmen continued targeting each other’s position for the tenth consecutive day with rocket fire and assault rifles in the tribal district of Kurram Agency.
“According to our information 35 people have died from both sides and more than three dozens were injured,” a government official in the semi-autonomous area said.
“We are facing a serious humanitarian crisis here. People are running out of food and hospitals of the medicines because of the fighting which seems spreading to more villages,” he added while seeking anonymity.
The government has so far not intervened to stop the deadly clashes, but the top official in the interior ministry Rehman Malik told reporters Friday that he had given “72 hours deadline to the warring tribesmen to stop the violence or face action”.
Separately, 12 Islamic militants were killed in neighbouring Bajaur tribal district, where government forces have been fighting the rebels for the past week.
“These people were killed when the helicopter gunships pounded the insurgents’ positions in the afternoon,” said a security official, who also spoke on condition of anonymity.
Bajaur, like other tribal districts, is believed to provide sanctuaries for Al Qaeda and Taliban fighters launching cross-border attacks on US-led international forces in Afghanistan.
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