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Jan. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Taliban militants killed 10 Pakistani security personnel in the country’s northwestern border region, the second such mass slaying in a week.
The men had been seized Dec. 24 in the Orakzai region near the country’s frontier with Afghanistan during a fight between Taliban guerrillas and Pakistani forces, Ehsanullah Ehsan, a spokesman for the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, said by phone from an undisclosed location today.
Kismat Ali Khan, a local government official, said in a phone interview that 10 bodies had been found in the area without saying whether the men had been members of the army or paramilitary police units. Militants executed 15 Frontier Constabulary troops last week. Ehsan said those slayings were revenge for an army operation that left several Taliban militants dead, including a prominent commander.
Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani’s government is attempting to negotiate with militants behind attacks that the New Delhi-based South Asia Terrorism portal says have killed almost 9,000 civilians and security personnel since 2009. Gilani in October convened a conference of political leaders that advocated a conciliatory approach to the guerrillas amid public pressure to end nearly seven years of fighting.
--With assistance from Haris Anwar in Islamabad. Editors: Mark Williams, Sam Nagarajan
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