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Pakistan Sends Military Reinforcements to Fight Militants in South Waziristan

The Pakistani military says it is sending reinforcements to the South Waziristan region on the Afghan border to target a Islamic rebel commander accused of involvement in the assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

Military spokesman General Athar Abbas says a recent escalation in militant attacks made it necessary to reinforce military posts in the tribal area. He said additional troops have been sent to the area, but did not specify how many.

South Waziristan is a stronghold of Baitullah Mehsud, a leader of Pakistani Taliban groups who is also believed to have ties to al-Qaida. Mehsud has claimed credit for organizing a series of suicide attacks against Pakistani military targets in the last year, but he has denied government allegations that he masterminded the assassination of Ms. Bhutto.

In related violence, a man was killed and at least one person was injured Wednesday when a suicide bomber detonated an explosive near a military checkpoint in Khyber Agency - part of Pakistan's northwestern tribal area. Also, Islamic militants fired a rocket at a military base in North Waziristan, killing one soldier and injuring two others.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.