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Pak PM Sharif calls Karzai, asks him to stop fleeing militants

June 17, 2014 15:04 IST

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has asked Afghan President Hamid Karzai to plug the entry of militants fleeing into his country following a massive army operation against Taliban, officials said on Tuesday.

A spokesman of the Pakistan Prime Minister’s Office confirmed the telephonic contact between Sharif and Karzai for cooperation against the militants.

The call was made on Monday after reports emerged that more than 2,000 people have entered Afghanistan through the porous border since the army launched an operation against the Taliban in their stronghold of North Waziristan on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Air force jets on Tuesday bombed hideouts of the militants in Datta Khel area, killing at least 15 militants, said a security official. Already about 184 militants and eight soldiers have been killed in the operation named Zarb-e-Azb, which means strike of the Prophet’s sword.

Another official said army wants to complete the operation before the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which will start later this month. Army chief General Raheel Sharif has postponed a visit to Sri Lanka. He was scheduled to go to Colombo on Tuesday for a four-day trip but he postponed it due to operation in North Waziristan, a military spokesman said.

Pakistan and Sri Lanka enjoy close defence cooperation. The Pakistan army launched the operation in retaliation to the deadly terror attacks on the country’s biggest airport in Karachi last week that killed nearly 40 people, including 10 Uzbek militants.

There are reports that people are escaping the conflict area and heading towards Bannu city in the northwest where camps have been established for them. Prime Minister Sharif has appointed federal minister Qadri Baloch as the main focal person to deal with the issue of people displaced due to fighting

Sajjad Hussain
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