News / Asia

Deadly Strikes on Militant Targets in Pakistan

Pakistani officials say a series of air strikes on suspected militant targets near the Afghan border killed at least 50 people Thursday.

Officials say at least two strikes took place in the northwestern tribal region of Orakzai, an area considered a Pakistan Taliban stronghold.   Authorities say many militants are believed to have fled to Orakazi to escape a military offensive farther south.   

Officials say the targets of Thursday's strikes included a seminary and a school.  On Wednesday, Pakistani officials said at least 21 suspected militants were killed in a military offensive in the same region.

Meanwhile, Pakistani police say they have arrested two men in connection with this month's kidnapping of a 5-year-old British boy who was held 12 days.

Law enforcement authorities in the central city of Jhelum announced the arrests Thursday and showed two men in shackles with hoods over their heads.

Investigators say the suspects are part of a criminal gang linked to other crimes, including murders and kidnappings.

Kidnappers abducted Sahil Saeed from his grandparents' house on March 4 as robbers held the family at gunpoint.  He was released unharmed, after his family paid kidnappers a ransom of about $150,000.  Authorities say they recovered most of the money.

Police in Spain and France have already arrested five people in connection with the kidnapping, including two Pakistani men and a Romanian woman.  

Authorities say two of the suspects collected the ransom from the boy's father in Paris.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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