42 pro-Taliban militants killed in Pakistan
A militant commander and 42 suspected pro-Taliban militants have been killed in airstrikes in Pakistan's Upper Orakzai Agency, Press TV reported.
In a series of assaults in the country's northwest, Pakistani jets and helicopter gunships attacked seven militant strongholds where the troops have intensified their attacks in recent weeks.
Government official Nauman Khan said 42 militants were killed and over 60 others wounded during night-time air assaults on Monday.
Security officials also confirmed the death of a key pro-Taliban commander, Ihsan Farooqi, who is said to have been killed in airstrikes on Sunday. Farooqi operated militant training centers in the Orakzai tribal region.
The Pakistani military says several hundred militants have been killed in Orakzai in recent weeks but there has been no independent verification of the claim. The militants dispute the figures cited by the Pakistani military.
Pro-Taliban militant spokesman Hafiz Saeed confirmed the attacks but denied that there were any casualties, saying the fighter jets only bombed abandoned houses.