Pakistani troops resume shelling near Afghan border

Click here: Guardian.co.uk – Pakistani troops resume shelling near Afghan border

Pakistani troops resumed shelling today in North Waziristan, near the Afghan border, in fighting that has left about 250 people dead and caused thousands to flee.

An Associated Press reporter in Miran Shah, the region’s main town, heard a burst of artillery or mortar fire before dawn…Residents said yesterday Pakistani aircraft had bombed the nearby village of Epi, killing dozens of militants and civilians and injuring many more, including shoppers in a packed bazaar.

The army said the planes were targeting militant hideouts near Mir Ali. Local tribesmen said about 50 militants were killed. The army has reported the deaths of up to 200 militants and 47 troops in five days of clashes, the deadliest since Pakistan threw its support behind the US-led “war on terror” in 2001. Mr Ullah said about 10,000 people from Mir Ali and surrounding villages had abandoned their homes and, with the army blocking the roads, had walked through the mountains to safer towns.

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