22 security, 45 militants killed in Dir operation

22 security, 45 militants killed in Dir operation UPPER DIR: Hundreds of heavily armed Taliban stormed villages in Upper Dir and besieged a Pakistani checkpost on the Afghan border for a second day Thursday, killing 22 security personnel and 45 militants. Four civilians, including two women and 2 minors were also killed, Geo News reported.

Twelve security personnel are also missing.

A senior police official told that 300 militants, including Afghan Taliban from across the border and Pakistani Taliban, took part in the attack that began before dawn on Wednesday and continued more than 24 hours later.

Officials said the militants targeted the Shaltalu checkpoint, surrounded by mountains and forest in the northwestern district of Upper Dir, about six kilometres (four miles) from the border with Afghanistan's Kunar province.

The Pakistani military sent reinforcements to the police checkpost, deploying helicopter gunships in a bid to quell the attack. Police sources told that the battle is still going on and Frontier Corps (paramilitary) troops, army helicopters and artillery and police personnel are taking part in the operation.

Curfew has been imposed in the affected area whereas communications system is also paralysed since the villages were attacked.

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