According to a statement by the army on Thursday, the exchange of fire took place in North Waziristan District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, a former stronghold of the Pakistani Taliban and other militant groups.
"A fire exchange took place between terrorists and our own troops," the army said. Six soldiers were “martyred” and three militants were killed, it said.
Less than a week ago, a bomber drove into a military base camp just outside the rugged Pakistani district, killing three soldiers.
The Pakistani Taliban, also known as Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), an umbrella group of several militant groups, has been behind attacks against the state, which have become more frequent since last year after it revoked a ceasefire and peace talks with the government in Islamabad collapsed.
The government says the peace talks allowed the release from prison of hundreds of the militants and their leaders, enabling them to regroup and launch fresh attacks.
Islamabad says the militants enjoy safe haven in Afghanistan to plan and execute the attacks, a charge Kabul denies.
Amir Khan Muttaqi, foreign minister of Afghanistan's Taliban administration, is arriving in Islamabad on Friday for meetings with his Pakistani and Chinese counterparts.
The outlawed TTP has a strong presence in North Waziristan and elsewhere in the region. It is allied with the Afghan Taliban. The 2021 Afghan Taliban takeover has emboldened the Pakistani Taliban, who have stepped up attacks since then. The military in recent weeks has also carried out multiple raids on militant hideouts in the northwest.
Over the past years, the TTP militants have been involved in multiple terrorist attacks, including targeted bombings and killings of members of religious communities and security officials across the country.
On December 16, 2014, the group attacked Peshawar’s Army School, where more than 150 people, mostly children, were killed, one of the deadliest massacres in Pakistan’s history.
Source: Press TV
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