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- Wednesday, December 29, 2010 - From Print Edition


PESHAWAR: Zahid Mandev, commander of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Bannu chapter, and the man wanted in the murder of son of Provincial Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain, Qari Barkatullah, was reported to be among those killed in a drone attack in Mir Ali on December 27, sources confided to The News.


“There are reports that Zahid Mandev and Qari Barkatullah are among those killed in the attack. But officially it cannot be confirmed at this stage,” a senior security official told The News on condition of anonymity. He said that Zahid Mandev was supervising activities of militants in Bannu from North and South Waziristan.


At least 22 people were killed when missiles fire by US drones hit two vehicles in Mir Ali sub-division in North Waziristan. “Qari Barkat was wanted to the investigation agency in the murder of Mian Rashid Hussain, the lone son of Mian Iftikhar Hussain,” said the source. Mian Rashid was shot dead near his house in Pabbi, a few months ago.


Other top commanders, according to the sources, who were reportedly killed in the drone attack included Qari Monib, a mainstream leader of TTP Lakki Marwat, and Fazal Amin and Qari Ihsanullah. All these militants were traveling in two vehicles towards an unknown place when hit by the pilot-less US plane.