Pakistan Fight Taliban in Swat Valley as Obama Meets with Afghan, Pakistani leaders

May 6, 2009

(ChattahBox) — It seems that a major offensive is building in Pakistan to take on the Taliban in Swat. Wednesday, Pakistan attacked Taliban militants with helicopter gunships and mortar rounds in a northwestern region as thousands of civilians are reported to be fleeing their homes with 500,000 expected to eventually leave as the peace deal looks to have crumbled. Ground forces have reportedly advanced toward the emerald mine area and targeted the hideouts of militants with artillery shelling and gunship fire.¬† The army claims to have killed several militants in this attack, but there is no independent confirmation of their claims.

The Pakistani push in Swat comes as US President Barack Obama meets President Karzai of Afghanistan and President Zardari of Pakistan in Washington today in joint talks. On Tuesday¬† ahead of the meeting, Mr. Zardari postured that his government is safe and the country’s nuclear arsenal is in secure hands. Zardari is seeking billions of dollars in military and non-military aid and will probably get it as the US believes it needs Pakistan to defeat al Qaeda and stabilize Afghanistan, even though many insiders are worried the government seems too willing to appease militants.


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