Pakistani Taliban Kills 15 Abducted Security Officers

Posted January 5th, 2012 at 1:55 am (UTC-5)
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The Pakistani Taliban said Thursday that it has killed 15 paramilitary soldiers who were abducted late last month along the country's restive border with Afghanistan.

A Taliban spokesperson told reporters that the Pakistani troops were shot and dumped in the border tribal region of North Waziristan. Reports from Pakistan say authorities have located the bodies, which show signs of torture and gunshot wounds.

The troops were abducted on December 22 when dozens of militants raided a paramilitary post in the Tank district of the northwestern province of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

Reuters news agency quoted a Pakistan Taliban spokesperson as saying the attack was carried out in revenge for military operations against militants near the Afghan border. Pakistan's military has carried out a series of operations against militants in the tribal area in recent years.

The incident comes days after al-Qaida and Afghan Taliban leaders reportedly asked Pakistani militants to stop targeting Pakistani security forces. The request, which allegedly originated from Afghan Taliban supreme commander Mullah Omar, said that Pakistani militants should instead concentrate on battling U.S.-led troops in Afghanistan.

In recent months, various Pakistani militants and government officials have suggested that Islamabad is holding preliminary peace talks with the Pakistani Taliban and affiliated militant groups. But other officials and militant leaders have rejected the claim, and violence along the border has continued.