Pakistani officials say security forces clashed with militants near the
Afghan border Saturday, leaving 16 militants and two soldiers dead.
say troops fought back after more than 60 militants attacked a security
post in the Spin Tangi area of the Mohmand tribal district.
clash in Mohmand came as Pakistani troops battled a fifth consecutive
day to take control of the strategic Buner valley, just 100 kilometers
from the capital.
Officials say more than 170 militants and at least two police officers have been killed in several days of fighting.
Saturday, the military said it was clearing bombs laid along one of two
main roads it has secured, allowing civilians to travel to Buner's main
town of Daggar. The army said it took control of Daggar from militants
Pakistan launched the offensive after Taliban forces violated a peace deal in the region that required militants to disarm.
authorities held talks Friday with the main negotiator in that deal,
hardline Muslim cleric Sufi Mohammad. They said despite the violence,
they still hope to implement the deal by establishing Islamic courts
throughout the northwest Malakand
officials are welcoming Pakistan's military offensive against Islamic
extremists, saying Islamabad realizes the threat posed by the Taliban
and has begun to respond.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.