04:33, 15 July 2020
watch on Dushanbe time, GMT+5
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12 killed during military raid in central Pakistan

At least nine suspected Pakistani Taliban fighters and three soldiers

have been killed after a shootout following a joint military and police raid in the central district of Dera Ghazi Khan, Pakistan’s military says. Two soldiers were also wounded in the clash, which targeted a suspected Taliban hideout in the Basti Dadwani area of Dera Ghazi Khan, about 490km south of the capital Islamabad, the military said in a statement. Pakistan Ranger units - a parimiliatary force - were carrying out a search operation in the area to arrest other suspects, it said. Friday's raid came as part of the military’s Operation Radd-ul-Fasaad (Elimination of Chaos), launched in the wake of a string of suicide bombings and attacks that killed at least 130 people across Pakistan in February. Pakistan has launched a series of military operations since 2007 targeting the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and its allies, mostly in the country’s tribal areas. The last operation, Zarb-e-Azb, was launched in 2014, and targeted TTP bases in their northwestern stronghold of North Waziristan.