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South Waziristan

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WORLD
November 28, 2010 | By Alex Rodriguez, Los Angeles Times
After a year spent without work and queuing for handouts, families who sought refuge here from an offensive against the Pakistani Taliban are eager to see their homes and farms again. But they doubt they'll be able to sleep peacefully when they get there. Officials say the high-profile offensive they launched last fall in South Waziristan near the Afghan border has secured the area, and they are planning to start sending 400,000 displaced people back early next month. However, evidence from South Waziristan and other areas where the military has gone after the Taliban suggest that relatively few militants were killed and the rest didn't go very far, an illustration of how difficult it is for Pakistan to defeat a force that has bloodied its cities and targeted Americans.
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WORLD
November 2, 2013 | By Aoun Sahi and Mark Magnier
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan - Pakistani security forces were on high alert Saturday amid concerns of revenge attacks after the killing of Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud in a U.S. drone missile strike. Mehsud has been reported killed in the past by U.S. and Pakistani security forces -- only to reappear alive. But on Saturday, the Taliban confirmed his killing Friday in the Miranshah area of lawless North Waziristan near the Afghan border. “We believe that hundreds of thousands more mujahedeen will rise from the drops of Hakimullah's blood,” Maulana Azam Tariq, a Pakistani Taliban spokesman from South Waziristan, said by phone from an undisclosed location.
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WORLD
November 26, 2009 | By Alex Rodriguez
Since the Pakistani army launched a long-awaited offensive last month to destroy the Taliban in South Waziristan, many militants have fled to nearby districts and begun to establish new strongholds, a strategy that suggests they will regroup and remain a potent threat to the country's weak, U.S.-backed government. Pakistani Taliban militants have escaped primarily to Kurram and Orakzai, districts outside the battle zone but still within Pakistan's largely ungoverned tribal areas along the Afghan border, villagers there say. The military lacks a significant presence in much of these areas, making them an ideal environment for the Islamic militants to regroup.
WORLD
October 31, 2013 | By Aoun Sahi and Mark Magnier
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- A claim by the Pakistani government this week that 67 civilians died in drone strikes over the last five years, a surprisingly low number given previous casualty estimates, has sparked controversy, skepticism and speculation that American pressure may be behind the figure. Adding to the debate, a drone strike early Thursday in North Waziristan near the border with Afghanistan -- the first in a month -- killed three people. Their identity was not immediately known.
WORLD
November 21, 2011 | By Alex Rodriguez and Zulfiqar Ali, Los Angeles Times
Leaders of the Pakistani Taliban have begun preliminary talks with intermediaries of the government aimed at reaching a peace agreement in the tribal region of South Waziristan, the site of a large-scale military operation against the homegrown insurgency in 2009. Sources close to the Pakistani Taliban confirmed that talks were underway, adding that the discussions were at an early stage. The intermediaries include tribal elders in South Waziristan, the militant group's stronghold.
WORLD
November 20, 2009 | By Alex Rodriguez and Zulfiqar Ali
Reporting from Islamabad, Pakistan, and Peshawar, Pakistan -- A suicide bombing at a crowded courthouse in Peshawar killed 19 people Thursday, the 10th such attack in six weeks for a city bearing the brunt of retaliation from Taliban militants battling Pakistani troops along the Afghan border. Now in its fifth week, Pakistan's military offensive has succeeded in retaking much of the ground held by Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters in South Waziristan, for years the militants' primary stronghold.
WORLD
June 5, 2011 | By Mark Magnier, Los Angeles Times
An overnight attack by an unmanned aircraft killed Ilyas Kashmiri, an Al Qaeda-linked operative blamed for several high-profile attacks in Pakistan and India, local news reports and a statement by his banned militant organization said Saturday. If borne out, this would be the second major U.S. anti-terrorism coup in quick succession, coming just a month after the killing of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden by Navy SEALs. Analysts had identified Kashmiri as a possible Bin Laden successor.
WORLD
March 17, 2004 | Zulfiqar Ali, Special to The Times
At least eight members of Pakistan's security forces were killed and 24 were wounded Tuesday in a fierce gun battle with tribesmen in a troubled region bordering Afghanistan, officials and eyewitnesses said. At least 24 suspects were reported killed in the firefight that raged for several hours in Kalosha district, about five miles west of Wana, the administrative center of South Waziristan. The casualty toll may increase, local journalist Silab Mahsood said by telephone.
WORLD
November 15, 2009 | Reuters
A suicide attacker set off a car bomb at a police checkpoint Saturday, killing at least 10 people, officials said. The city of Peshawar, near the Afghan border, has seen several bomb attacks since the army began an offensive against the Taliban in South Waziristan last month. Militants have hit back by stepping up attacks on towns and cities, killing several hundred people. "The car bomber approached a barrier near the police check post, and then it exploded," said city official Sahibzada Anis.
WORLD
February 1, 2010 | By Alex Rodriguez
The Pakistani army Sunday was investigating reports that Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mahsud may have been killed in a drone strike last month. If confirmed, the militant's death could deal insurgents a severe setback in their battle against the government. Army spokesman Maj. Gen. Athar Abbas said Mahsud, 28, was wounded Jan. 17 in a U.S. airstrike that targeted two cars in North Waziristan, a largely Taliban-controlled tribal region along the border with Afghanistan. Abbas said intelligence agents are investigating a report on state television that Mahsud was killed in the airstrike and buried four days ago in the tribal district of Orakzai.
WORLD
June 30, 2013 | By Zulfiqar Ali and Alex Rodriguez
PESHAWAR, Pakistan - Separate bomb blasts across Pakistan killed at least 36 people Sunday, the latest in a series of extremist attacks to hit the South Asian nation since Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif rose to power this spring. In the northwestern city of Peshawar, militants detonated a car bomb near a security forces convoy, killing at least 15 people. Shafeeullah Khan, a senior police officer in Peshawar, said the attackers planted explosives in a Suzuki compact car and parked it on a busy road.
WORLD
May 23, 2013 | By Shashank Bengali, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - In his early teens, Jude Kenan Mohammad was a familiar sight in his middle-class section of Raleigh, N.C., riding around on his bike to deliver groceries to elderly Muslim neighbors. But with an American mother and Pakistani father, Mohammad felt caught between two worlds, friends recalled. As he grew older, the mild-mannered young man criticized the U.S. war in Afghanistan and believed that he was a target for discrimination in post-Sept. 11 America, the friends said.
WORLD
December 18, 2012 | By Nasir Khan and Mark Magnier
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- Five female anti-polio workers in Pakistan were slain Tuesday by gunmen on motorcycles, police said, on the second day of a three-day national immunization campaign. Four of the women were killed in Karachi, the nation's largest city, and the fifth in Peshawar. Sagheer Ahmed, the health minister for Sindh province, whose capital is Karachi, ordered a halt to the anti-polio drive in the port city after the shootings. Health officials said vaccinations were also halted until further notice in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, where Peshawar is located.
OPINION
October 11, 2012
Re "She's on the front lines in drone battle," Oct. 9 Professor Mary Ellen O'Connell and political activist Imran Khan contend that the U.S. strategy of covert targeted drone strikes against militants outside Afghanistan is illegal under international law. The U.S. finds itself at war against a stateless band of Islamic militants who kill innocent civilians with explosives and launch attacks against Western embassies and civilian targets outside...
WORLD
November 21, 2011 | By Alex Rodriguez and Zulfiqar Ali, Los Angeles Times
Leaders of the Pakistani Taliban have begun preliminary talks with intermediaries of the government aimed at reaching a peace agreement in the tribal region of South Waziristan, the site of a large-scale military operation against the homegrown insurgency in 2009. Sources close to the Pakistani Taliban confirmed that talks were underway, adding that the discussions were at an early stage. The intermediaries include tribal elders in South Waziristan, the militant group's stronghold.
WORLD
July 8, 2011 | By Brian Bennett, Los Angeles Times
The U.S. has confirmed that a key Al Qaeda planner and trainer was killed in a drone strike in the tribal areas of Pakistan in June, a U.S. intelligence official said Thursday. Ilyas Kashmiri led a militant group in Pakistan and in recent years had been brought into the leadership of Al Qaeda, running a training camp and planning attacks against targets in India and Europe, said the U.S. official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to publicly discuss the matter.
WORLD
April 18, 2010 | By Alex Rodriguez and Zulfiqar Ali
Reporting from Islamabad, Pakistan, and Peshawar, Pakistan -- Two suicide bombers attacked a refugee camp in northwest Pakistan on Saturday, killing at least 41 people and injuring 64 others in what appeared to be retaliation for the military's latest offensive against Taliban fighters. The dead and wounded had been lining up for food at a refugee camp in the volatile tribal region's Kohat district, said North-West Frontier Province Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain. Police said a suicide bomber rushed up to the line and blew himself up. As others rushed to the blast site to help the wounded, a second bomber detonated his explosives.
WORLD
December 18, 2012 | By Nasir Khan and Mark Magnier
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- Five female anti-polio workers in Pakistan were slain Tuesday by gunmen on motorcycles, police said, on the second day of a three-day national immunization campaign. Four of the women were killed in Karachi, the nation's largest city, and the fifth in Peshawar. Sagheer Ahmed, the health minister for Sindh province, whose capital is Karachi, ordered a halt to the anti-polio drive in the port city after the shootings. Health officials said vaccinations were also halted until further notice in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, where Peshawar is located.
WORLD
June 10, 2011 | By Mark Magnier, Los Angeles Times
An attack by militants on a checkpoint in a lawless tribal area near the Afghan border early Thursday underscores how overstretched the Pakistani military is and why it is resisting U.S. pressure to conduct a massive offensive in North Waziristan, analysts said Thursday. About 100 insurgents stormed the checkpoint in the environs of Marobi village in South Waziristan with rockets and machine guns, sparking a three-hour gunfight that killed eight soldiers and wounded 12 others. Local officials said 10 militants were also killed and five wounded in the battle, figures disputed by a spokesman for the outlawed Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan group who said none of its fighters were killed and that two had received bullet wounds.
WORLD
June 5, 2011 | By Mark Magnier, Los Angeles Times
An overnight attack by an unmanned aircraft killed Ilyas Kashmiri, an Al Qaeda-linked operative blamed for several high-profile attacks in Pakistan and India, local news reports and a statement by his banned militant organization said Saturday. If borne out, this would be the second major U.S. anti-terrorism coup in quick succession, coming just a month after the killing of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden by Navy SEALs. Analysts had identified Kashmiri as a possible Bin Laden successor.
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