3 Nov 2009

Pakistan forces ' take militant stronghold'

3:43 pm on 3 November 2009

Pakistani forces say they have seized control of a key Taliban stronghold in the region of South Waziristan.

The army said it had full control of Kaniguram, the latest capture in an offensive against militants that began in South Waziristan on 17 October.

The town was thought to have been home to hundreds of Uzbek militants, led by the hardline Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan.

Encircled by mountains, it also hosts substantial numbers of militants loyal to the Pakistani Taliban, led by Hakimullah Mehsud.

The offensive against militants has sparked a string of suicide bomb attacks, the BBC reports.

About 35 people were killed in an attack in Rawalpindi and seven were injured on the outskirts of Lahore.