23 Pakistani soldiers including SSG commandos killed in Tirah valley fight against TTP

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Peshawar: At least 23 Pakistani troops including Special Services Groups (SSG) commandos were killed and several others injured after heavy fighting between the troops and the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in Tirah valley of Khyber Agency.

Scores of militants have also been killed in the offensive during the last three days.

A decisive operation has been launched against militants in the Tirah valley of Bara by Special Services Groups (SSG) forces along with regular troops, sources said.

Official sources confirmed that several soldiers, including SSG commandos, have been killed in the battle for Tirah valley on Saturday, around 30 militants have also been confirmed dead along with scores of others injured.

On late Sunday evening, a clash took place between security forces and militants in Akka Khel area of Bara tehsil. Ten militants were killed in the fighting, official sources said.

Sources said that SSG commandos along with regular army troops and Frontier Corps are battling to root out the last pockets of resistance in the Tirah valley especially on the border of Orakzai Agency.

The landlocked area is reported to be a bastion of the banned Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and other foreign militants.

The offensive has entered a crucial phase, after softening of targets by gunships and jet fighters. Ground troops along with local volunteers have been mobilised to clear the area.

Security experts had already hinted at a decisive strike in the Tirah valley as the TTP and Lashkar-i-Islam had started consolidating their positions in the valley.

The two groups pose a serious threat to the settled areas especially Peshawar.

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