Six Pakistani soldiers have been killed in a clash with the Pakistan Taliban near the border with Afghanistan, according to an army statement, which added that four armed fighters belonging to the armed group were also killed.
“On 22 August 2023, [a] fire exchange took place between own troops and terrorists in general area Asman Manza, South Waziristan District,” ISPR, Pakistan Army’s media wing, said in a statement on Tuesday.
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It confirmed that “six brave soldiers having fought gallantly, embraced martyrdom after an intense exchange of fire” and “four terrorists were sent to hell, while two terrorists were injured”.
The army said that the clash took place in North Waziristan.
The Pakistani Taliban, known as the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), claimed responsibility for the attack, saying its fighters had ambushed two military vehicles.
Brigadier Saad Muhammad, a former Pakistani military official who also served as a defence attache to Afghanistan, said Pakistan’s special representative for Afghanistan, Asif Durrani, visited Kabul last month and shared Islamabad’s concerns about cross-border attacks.
“My view is that while Pakistan has listed down its grievances to the Afghan government due to cross-border militancy, the Afghan Taliban will need time to control the militants on their border,” Muhammad told Al Jazeera.
“It is not like a switch that you can turn on or off. Pakistan should give time till at least the end of the year. If there is a reduction in violent attacks from across the border, then that is good for us.”