Islamic Militants Seize Second Fort From Pakistani Troops
Taliban forces of warlord Baitullah Mehsud (pictured) took a second fort in the tribal region of Pakistan today.
Yesterday, 200-1,000 of Baitullah Mehsud‘s forces armed with rifles and rocket-propelled grenades captured the Frontier Corps Fort at Sararogha, Pakistan after blasting it in a 12 hour firefight.
The Taliban forces left the fort hours later.
Pakistani troops have abandoned a fort in a remote tribal area, a day after another was overrun by pro-Taleban militants, officials and witnesses say.
They say that paramilitary personnel at Sipla Toi military post in South Waziristan left their positions fearing an attack by the militants.
But an army spokesman told the BBC he had received no such reports.
On Wednesday, the army said hundreds of militants temporarily seized a fort in the Sararogha area of South Waziristan.
Locals told the BBC that 30-40 troops had been stationed at Sipla Toi, some 90km (55 miles) from the town of Dera Ismail Khan. The outpost is nearly as big as the one at Sararogha.
“According to our reports, the troops abandoned the fort on their own. Some left last night, others went away this morning.
“There was no attack from the Taleban,” a South Waziristan tribal administration official based in the town of Tank told the BBC.
A resident of the area said that the retreating troops had not left any weapons or ammunition behind.
A Taleban spokesman, Maulvi Umar, told the BBC Urdu service that militants had captured the Sipla Toi fort. But there was no independent confirmation of his claims.
Bill Roggio at The Long War Journal has another report on the capture of this second fort by the Talibani forces.
Pakistani police officers patrol in Mingora, northwest Pakistan, Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2008. In a major battlefield success, Islamic militants attacked and occupied a Pakistani military fort on the Afghan border, officials said Wednesday. (AP)
UPDATE: Al-Qaeda of Pakistan called for further attacks against government forces today in a graphic video where they also show the beheading of a Pakistani soldier.