20 militants killed in Pakistan airstrikes

Updated 19 June 2015
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20 militants killed in Pakistan airstrikes

ISLAMABAD: Pakistani airstrikes on Friday killed 20 militants in the country’s lawless tribal area bordering Afghanistan, the military said, part of a massive ongoing operation against the Taleban.
The strikes took place in Khyber tribal district where the military began its latest offensive in October 2014 carrying out airstrikes and using artillery, mortars and ground troops.
“Twenty terrorists including some of their important commanders were killed in precise aerial strikes in remote areas of Khyber today,” the military said in a statement.
It added there were reports of about 18 militants injured in the strikes.
The area is remote and off-limits to journalists, making it difficult to verify the army’s claims, and the number and identity of those killed.
Pakistan has been battling a homegrown insurgency for over a decade following the late 2001 US-led invasion of Afghanistan.
The Pakistani military has recently undertaken a formal offensive to flush Pakistani Taleban and other militant strongholds in the North Waziristan tribal area in June last year and officials claim most of the area has been cleared. Authorities have since intensified operations, using airstrikes, artillery and mortars to take back territory both in the border regions and other parts of the country.
The counter-militancy operation is an extension of the Zarb-e-Azb army offensive that has been going on in the nearby North Waziristan tribal district since June of 2014. The army says the offensive has so far left up to 2,800 militants and 350 soldiers dead.


Merkel suffers new trembling spell on eve of G20

Updated 27 June 2019
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Merkel suffers new trembling spell on eve of G20

  • The shaking went on for two minutes, according to a DPA photographer who was present at the event
  • Her previous bout of shaking last Tuesday had been blamed on dehydration on a hot summer’s day

BERLIN: German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday suffered another episode of uncontrolled trembling, a week after a similar incident that sparked questions about her health.
The latest lapse came hours before Merkel was due to board a plane for the G20 summit in Osaka, Japan.
The German leader began to tremble as she stood next to President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who was giving a speech at a ceremony to formally appoint a new justice minister.
The shaking went on for two minutes, according to a DPA photographer who was present at the event.
Merkel folded her arms visibly in a bid to stop the trembling.
She only finally brought it under control once she was able to take a few steps.
She was offered a glass of water but turned it down.
Her previous bout of shaking last Tuesday had been blamed on dehydration on a hot summer’s day.
Despite the latest incident, a German government spokesman said Merkel would not be canceling any appointments on Thursday and Friday.
“The chancellor is well,” he said, adding that she will be flying as planned to Osaka for the G20 summit.
Merkel, frequently called the European Union’s most influential leader and the most powerful woman in the world, turns 65 next month.
She has said she will leave politics at the end of her term, in 2021.
There were brief concerns about her health in 2014 when she was taken ill during a television interview. The broadcast was briefly interrupted when she experienced a drop in blood pressure.
Her spokesman Steffen Seibert explained at the time the leader did not feel well for a moment, then ate and drank something and continued the interview.