Pakistani airstrikes leave eight dead in Afghanistan, includes women and children

Pakistan. Photo Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons/ShareAlike 2.0 Generic

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IBNS-CMEDIA: Airstrikes conducted by Pakistan  Khost and Paktia provinces of Afghanistan on Monday left at least eight people, including women and children, dead, media reports said.

The Taliban government in Kabul said such airstrikes reflected a clear violation of Afghanistan’s territory.

The Ministry of Defense said that the Islamic Emirate forces responded to Pakistan with heavy weapons,reported Tolo News.

“The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan strongly condemns these strikes and calls the unconsidered act an invasion of its territory, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan has the experience of a long struggle for freedom against the superpowers of the world and cannot tolerate any kind of invasion of its territory,” Hamdullah Fitrat, the deputy spokesman of the Islamic Emirate, was quoted as saying by the news agency.

Pakistani media reports claimed the airstrikes targeted some Tehreek-e- Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militants.

TTP commander Abdullah Shah in a video clip denied being attacked despite Pakistani media claims of his death in last night’s airstrikes in Paktika’s Barmal District, reported Tolo News.

“The propaganda being spread is baseless. It’s March 18th. Our operations in Southern Waziristan are ongoing. We haven’t left; we’re still here,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Taliban government has denied the presence of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militants in the country.

Zabihullah Mujahid, the spokesperson for Taliban government, told Tolo News that Afghan soil is not allowed to be used against other countries, including Pakistan.

“We reject the presence of any … foreign groups in Afghanistan and they are not allowed to operate on Afghan soil. In this regard, we have made our utmost effort and continue to do so; but one thing we must accept is that Afghanistan shares a very long border area with Pakistan, and there are places with rugged terrain including mountains and forests, and places that might be out of our control,” said Zabihullah Mujahid.

Recently, Asif Ali Durani, Pakistan’s Special Representative for Afghanistan, claimed that five to six thousand members of the TTP are sheltered in Afghanistan.