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Taliban kill seven soldiers in North Waziristan

10 March, 2012

MIRANSHAH: Taliban armed with guns and rockets ambushed a military convoy on Friday, killing seven soldiers in the terrorist stronghold of North Waziristan, officials said.

The attack took place at Khar Qamar, 30 kilometres west of Miranshah, the main town in the district that has become the most notorious Taliban and al Qaeda stronghold on Pakistan's border with Afghanistan. Security officials said nine terrorists were also killed in the attack, but there was no independent confirmation of the toll.

"At least seven soldiers were martyred when terrorists fired machine guns and rockets on a military convoy," a senior security official told AFP. Other security officials in Peshawar, the biggest city in northwest Pakistan, confirmed the attack and that the toll had risen from four to seven. "After the ambush, Pakistani military helicopters and troops retaliated and there were reports of deaths of nine militants," an intelligence official said.

Pakistan has for years battled terrorists in the tribal belt on the Afghan border. More than 3,000 soldiers have died but Pakistan has resisted US pressure to carry out a sweeping offensive in North Waziristan. US and Afghan officials say Taliban have been using Pakistan's semi-autonomous tribal belt as a rear base during their 10-year insurgency against Kabul and US troops.

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