Pakistan's military says its anti-terrorism operation in the northwestern tribal districts of North Waziristan is yielding positive results.
Pakistan military spokesman Major General Asim Saleem Bajwa told VOA Deewa (Pashto Broadcast) in Washington on Friday that more than 1,200 militants in North Waziristan and Khyber have been killed since operation 'Zarb-e-Azb' began in June. Some 200 Pakistani soldiers have been killed during the anti-terrorism drive, which Bajwa said would continue until the militants are eliminated.
Bajwa said Pakistan is as concerned as other nations by the rise of the Islamic State group in the Middle East, but did not agree with reports suggesting the presence of IS supporters in Pakistan.
A week ago, a leading Pakistani newspaper reported the Islamic State is increasing its presence in Pakistan and that its local recruits are planning major attacks on key installations.
Dawn reported November 8 that officials in Baluchistan province in southwestern Pakistan revealed the development in a confidential report sent to Pakistani authorities.
The newspaper quoted the report as saying Islamic State is encouraging elements of two Sunni extremist groups -- Lashkar-e-Jhangvi and Ahl-e-Sunnat Wai Jamat -- to join forces and carry out attacks.
The confidential report says IS is planning attacks on Pakistani troops conducting operations near the Afghan border, and on government installations and Shi'ites. It says the government in Baluchistan is calling for heightened security measures particularly in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.