Swat update 1 Feb 2009: Yet another school blown up by the Taliban terrorists

Eight militants killed, school blown up in Swat

By Hameedullah Khan

MINGORA, Jan 31: Eight militants, three soldiers and two civilians were killed and several others injured in armed clashes in different areas of Swat on Saturday.

The militants attacked another school with explosives. The building of the primary school for boys in Nengolai was completely destroyed.

Hundreds of families have fled the fighting in the troubled region.

Troops engaged militants in Dheri, Kabal, Nengolai, Manglawar, Charbagh and adjoining areas.

Fighting has intensified after the federal government announced that it has adopted a new strategy to crush terrorists in Swat and will establish its writ within weeks in the volatile region.

Shelling by artillery and helicopter gunships on militants’ positions has also been intensified.

The militants attacked security personnel guarding the Mingora-Kabal road near the Aligrama area to ensure safe passage to a convoy between Kanju and Kabal.

The convoy was passing from the area when the militants opened fire on the security personnel, killing three troops.

They were identified as naib subedar Khaliq, nike Naeem and Sarfaraz. Major Javed was injured in the attack.

Troops fired back, killing four militants and arrested six others. Kalashnikovs, hand-grenades and other arms were seized.

Two civilians — Khan Bacha and Mrs Karim — were also killed in the crossfire.

In another incident, militants perched on mountains fired rockets on a military base camp in Kabal, injuring two soldiers. They were identified as Ghazai and Khan Mohammad.

Security forces also exchanged fire with militants in Dheri area, killing two of them on the spot. Two Taliban were killed in Manglawar and Charbagh areas. A Frontier Constabulary man was injured when militants attacked the Kabal police station.

Nengolai, Shakar Dara, Koza and Bara Bandai, Matta, Khwzakhela and Charbagh are under curfew for the past eight days. (Dawn)