Peshawar/ORAKZAI AGENCY - More than 35 militants and eight soldiers were killed in a string of air attacks and bomb blasts in different parts of Fata and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Tuesday.

At least 13 militants were killed in air strikes by Pakistani forces in Khyber Agency, believed to be militants involved in Wagah suicide attack that killed 60 people.

The military said those killed included some foreigners. Three of their hideouts were also destroyed, it added.

“Strikes were carried out on intelligence about presence of terrorists involved in Wagah border suicide attack,” the statement by the military said.

“Strikes were carried out on credible intelligence about presence of terrorists involved in Wagah border suicide attack,” said the statement.

In the neighbouring Orakzai Agency, a group of about 50 militants of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) attacked a security check post at Sherin Darra with sophisticated weapons. As a result, three security officials were martyred and seven injured.

Fresh troops rushed to the scene and fully retaliated, killing at least 18 militants. An explosive-laden double-cabin vehicle was also destroyed in the fierce fighting at Sherin Darra where security forces are being attacked from time to time. In the attack, at least three security forces’ men, identified as Hawaldar Imtiaz, Naik Razzaq and Sepoy Falak Zadar of the Frontier Corps (FC), were martyred, while their seven other companions – Hawaldar Shabbir, Naik Khalid, Sepoy Gul Wazir, Sepoy Gul Sahib Khan, Sepoy Hasan and Sepoy Gul Farman – sustained injuries. The injured were airlifted to a military hospital as few of them were found to be in critical condition.

Meanwhile, a drone attack took place in the village of Datta Khel, around 40 kilometres west of Miranshah in North Waziristan Agency, killing six militants.

The same area was attacked at least six times in September and October by Pakistani military air strikes.

“A US drone fired two missiles hitting a vehicle and a house that killed six militants while two others were injured,” a security official told news agencies.

Pakistan’s foreign ministry condemned the drone strike in a statement issued to the media, a routine reaction to such attacks, which have been targeting militants in the tribal areas since 2004.

“Pakistan considers such strikes a violation of its sovereignty and territorial integrity, especially at a time when our authorities are engaged in taking decisive action against terrorist elements in North Waziristan Agency,” the statement said.

Meanwhile, three personnel of levies were killed and three others, including a political administration officer, injured critically when a roadside improvised explosive device (IED) exploded in Salarzai tehsil of Bajaur Agency.

The officials said a political administration officer, Sahibzada Khan, and levies personnel were on polio security patrol in an official vehicle when they came under attack in Chargoo area, 19 kilometres from Khar.

They were in the area to monitor the security arrangements of polio teams in the region when their double-cabin vehicle was targeted by a road side remote-controlled bomb near Chargoo village,” the official added.

As a result of the explosion, two levies men, Amanullah and Obaidullah, died on the spot while the administration official and three personnel were critically wounded and shifted to the agency headquarters hospital in Khar.

Later, one of levies men, identified as Shafiullah, succumbed to his injuries. An official of the Agency Headquarters Hospital Khar told this correspondent that political administration official Sahibzada Khan was airlifted to Peshawar due to his critical condition while the two injured levies men were also referred to Peshawar for treatment.

Later, senior officials of the administration also reached the site of the explosion and launched a search operation in the area. No one claimed responsibility for the blast till the filing of this report, while the local people and administration officials said militants might be involved in the attack.

“We have launched an inquiry into the incident, but, according to our information, militants are responsible for the attacks as they had been involved in such activities in different parts of the agency in the past,” said an official.

In a related development, two security forces men were killed and three others sustained injuries in the explosion of a roadside bomb blast in Bannu district on Tuesday.

According to details, a convoy of the forces was on its way from Bannu city to Jani Khel when it reached Nullah Touchi, a roadside bomb exploded with a bang. Official sources said the security convoy was targeted with an improvised explosive device (IED). As a result, two security personnel were killed and three others injured. They were rushed to Bannu CMH. One of them is stated to be in critical condition.

The targeted vehicle was also damaged in the blast. Soon after the incident, the forces launched a search operation and apprehended at least six suspects. They were shifted for interrogation to some unknown location. Ansar-ul-Mijahideen, later, claimed responsibility for the attack.