26 suspects arrested in Khyber search operation
BARA: Three people, including a child, were reportedly killed when a mortar shell hit a house in Sipah, Bara tehsil. Separately, 26 people were arrested as the search operation continues in Khyber Agency. A khasadar forces official said that two tribesmen and a child were killed in the area when the mortar shell was fired from an unknown location. He added that despite the curfew imposed in the area, tribesmen in Speen Qabar retrieved the bodies from the house and buried them.
Identities of the victims could not be determined as curfew was imposed in the area blocking off all routes and communication systems.
The official added that the armed forces have directed people in Shalobar, Sipah, and Malikdin Khel to limit their movements due to the operation.
On August 25, four shells fell at a residential area in Qambarabad, killing nine people of one family, many of them children.
It still remains unclear where the stray shells are fired from or who was behind the attacks. Security officials claim that it was by the militants who target the civilian population to create a negative image of the forces.
A security official had told The Express Tribune in an earlier interview that calls intercepted at night revealed that the Lashkar-e-Islam is behind the mortar shell attacks.
In a separate incident, 26 suspects were arrested during a search operation in Khyber Agency on Tuesday.
A military operation was launched in the area on October 23 in Bara tehsil after frequent clashes.
An official of the paramilitary said that armed forces arrested the suspects during search operations in the Sipah, Malikdin Khel and Shalobar areas of the tehsil and took them to Fort Slop Camp to conduct further investigations.
The official also added that a bullet-riddled body was found by armed forces in Speen Qabar.
On October 15, five security personnel, including Rural SP Khurshid Khan, were killed when the Taliban attacked two checkpoints of the Mattani police station. Ten policemen and Frontier Constabulary (FC) personnel were also injured in the attack.
Despite the curfew imposed, many residents have been using secret and supposedly secure routes to leave the area and move to more settled areas of Peshawar.
The khasadar official said that security forces had also gained control of several areas in the troubled Bara tehsil.