SOUTH WAZIRISTAN AGENCY - Security forces killed sixty militants and secured several areas in the ongoing military operation Rah-e-Nejat here on Sunday, military sources informed. During the last twenty-four hours, sources revealed, Jandula, Kotkai, Sararogha, Mandana, Kund and Tarakai areas have been secured. Five security personnel were also martyred and 11 others injured in the operation. The security forces also secured seven-kilometre area in Shikai, Kanigorum and Ladha while intense fighting was continued in Sherwankai wherein 20 militants were killed while one soldier embraced martyrdom and three were injured. According to ISPR, important strategic points on several hilltops at Razmak were secured by security forces where 10 militants were killed. Two security personnel also embraced martyrdom and four were injured. The security forces also destroyed six anti-aircraft gun positions of militants and a gun position at Wozi Sar area of the Agency, while a large number of mines were recovered from the area. Vehicles under the use of militants were also destroyed. According to ISPR, with the advancement of security forces, militants were fleeing leaving behind ammunition. Monitoring Desk adds: Taliban are engaged in street fighting with soldiers as the army tries to break the militants grip on South Waziristan, reports BBC. Both sides claim to have suffered few casualties but residents in the remote area say dozens have died. The battle-hardened militants are supported by Uzbek fighters linked to Al-Qaeda. The military, mobilising from three directions, is controlling entry and exit points in the area. A Taliban spokesman told BBC militants have not conceded one inch of territory. Army spokesman Major General Athar Abbas told BBC the army was encountering less resistance than expected but admitted the troops were progressing slowly because of the remote areas rugged, mountainous terrain. We have to be very sure-footed, he said. There are a number of mines and IEDs [improvised explosive devices] in the area which require clearance. Nearly all communications in the region were down after the Taliban destroyed a telecommunications tower at Tiarza, local officials said. According to CNN, the Taliban claimed they had killed 68 security forces in the last day. Pakistani Taliban spokesman Azam Tariq told CNN by phone that only one Taliban fighter had been killed and three injured in that time. He said the anti-government forces had huge quantities of weapons which we got during the war against Russia and it is sufficient for us for many years, he said, presumably referring to the Soviet Unions 1979-1989 occupation of Afghanistan. Agencies add: Security forces pounded Taliban bases from the air and bore down on their leaders hometown Sunday, intensifying a major offensive against the militants and claiming to have killed 60 militants. Thousands of Al-Qaeda-linked fighters, heavily armed and well-trained, are holed up in the tribal belt, where the army says the offensive is concentrated on strongholds of the Tehreek-e-Taliban (TTP) movement. On the second day of the offensive, Taliban armed with rockets and heavy weapons put up strong resistance at Sharwangi, an area of impenetrable forest high in the mountains as fighter jets bombed positions, officials said. The military said 60 Taliban followers had been killed, although the region is cut off from the outside world and information on militant casualties is impossible to verify independently. In last 24 hours, reportedly 60 terrorists have been killed in operation Rah-e-Nejat, the military said in a statement. Casualties of security forces are five soldiers (dead) and 11 are injured. Ground forces launched the three-pronged push on Saturday, starting a much-anticipated assault in a bid to crush networks blamed for some of the worst attacks that have killed more than 2,250 people over the past two years. The resistance is not as stiff as we were expecting, maybe because we are still moving and have not yet reached the strongholds of the Taliban like Kotkia, Makin, Ladha and Kanigurram, one military official told AFP. About 20,000 to 25,000 troops headed into action after Pakistan vowed to act following attacks that left more than 170 people dead in less than two weeks. Jets carried out fresh air strikes on Sunday, backing up troops who encountered resistance on the ground, a military official told AFP. He said five Taliban hideouts were destroyed. Another official said the army captured rebel-held village Spinkair Raghzai, erecting a checkpoint en route to Kotkai, the hometown of Taliban chief Hakimullah Mehsud. Government forces pushing down from the north were clashing with militants in Nawaz Kot town, intelligence officials and residents said. There was heavy firing until midnight and in the morning I saw tanks moving in and Taliban were firing rocket-propelled grenades, said villager Gul Nawaz, who lives near Nawaz Kot. The army has launched brief offensives in South Waziristan before, the first in 2004 when it suffered heavy casualties before striking a peace pact. Security officials said soldiers advancing from the southwest met dogged resistance as they tried to push into the Taliban-held town of Khaisora early on Sunday. A Taliban spokesman said the army was being repulsed and he vowed attacks on supporters of President Barack Obama. Theyre trying to enter our land from all sides but weve repulsed their assault and theyve suffered heavy losses, spokesman Azam Tariq said by telephone. One Taliban had been killed and three wounded, he said. The government has put the countrys sovereignty at stake to please Obama ... well attack his well-wishers everywhere. Numerous offensives against militants in the tribal belt have met with limited success, costing the lives of 2,000 troops and ending generally with peace agreements that critics say simply gave the enemy a chance to re-arm. The operation will continue until the objectives are achieved. The army has blocked all entry and exit points of Waziristan, said army spokesman Major General Athar Abbas. Commanders have outlined an offensive lasting six to eight weeks, with the goal of finishing before the onset of harsh winter snows. There are an estimated 10,000 to 12,000 TTP fighters in South Waziristan and up to 25,000 across the semi-autonomous tribal belt, which has a history of fierce independence and a powerful culture of revenge. War in Waziristan will not be a simple one. Waziristan is like a black hole, Rahimullah Yusufzai, a tribal affairs expert, told AFP. Militants are believed to stockpile food and petrol in bunkers deep in the mountains. Their arsenal includes rocket launchers, assault and sniper rifles, anti-aircraft guns, grenades, mines, satellite phones and suicide vests. Ammunition supplies deep in the mountains are thought to be sufficient to keep them fighting for several months without outside supply lines. The offensive by troops was accompanied by an indefinite curfew slapped on parts of South Waziristan, officials said. APP adds: According to ISPR during Rah-e-Nijat operation, on Jandola-Kotkai-Sararogha axis, area up to Mandana, Kund and Tarakai feature has been secured by security forces and during the securing process reportedly 30 terrorists have been killed and many injured. Two soldiers embraced shahadat and 4 others were injured during the operation. On Shakai-Kaniguram-Ladha axis, operation has progressed 7km north of Shakai and features like Boya Narai and Wuzi Sar have been captured. Fighting is going around Sherwangi where around 20 terrorists have been killed and many others injured. During this episode one soldier embraced shahadat and 3 others were injured. Important features and tactical heights around and south of Razmak have been secured by security forces where 10 terrorists were learnt to be killed while 2 soldiers embraced shahdat and 4 others injured including two officers. During another effective advancement by the troops, six 12.7mm anti-aircraft gun positions of terrorists were effectively engaged and destroyed in different areas and one 12.7mm gun position was captured in Wuzi Sar area. A lot of IEDs and mines were also recovered. The security forces have also destroyed a number of vehicles that were under the use of terrorists. Due to security forces advance, terrorists are vacating their posts area leaving behind arms and ammunition. Villages and hutments en route the advance of troops are being cleared by security forces that are also conducting search and clearance operation simultaneously. However, the civilian population is not being targeted as in some areas people (including women) raised white flags; they were left off after search. As far as the operation Rah-e-Raast in Malakand and Swat is concerned, the security forces conducted search operation at Kaldar Khwar and Mulla Banda Nullah near Fatehpur and Miandam and apprehended 4 terrorists, besides recovering 9 caves of 12 feet length and 8 feet width. Security forces conducted search operation at Mian Milli near Matta and recovered one 12.7 mm gun while in another search operation at Hamwarai near Khawazakhela, two terrorists were apprehended. During search operation security forces discovered a cave at Tiligram and recovered few weapons from there. Monitoring Desk adds: According to CNN, a military official said troops have seized control of Kotkai, where Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud has lived with fellow commander Qari Hussain, the mastermind behind some of deadliest suicide attacks. Another military official said the airstrikes from jet fighters and helicopter gunships targeted militant hideouts in Kotkai and the villages of Badar, Barwand and Khisur, all strongholds of the Taliban and their late leader Baitullah Mehsud. The official asked not to be identified because he is not authorised to speak to the media. Meanwhile, Taliban are engaged in street fighting with soldiers as the army tries to break the militants grip on South Waziristan, reports BBC. Both sides claim to have suffered few casualties but residents in the remote area say dozens have died. The battle-hardened militants are supported by Uzbek fighters linked to Al-Qaeda. The military, mobilising from three directions, is controlling entry and exit points in the area. A Taliban spokesman told BBC militants have not conceded one inch of territory. Army spokesman Major General Athar Abbas told BBC the army was encountering less resistance than expected but admitted the troops were progressing slowly because of the remote areas rugged, mountainous terrain. We have to be very sure-footed, he said. There are a number of mines and IEDs [improvised explosive devices] in the area which require clearance. Nearly all communications in the region were down after the Taliban destroyed a telecommunications tower at Tiarza, local officials said. According to CNN, the Taliban claimed they had killed 68 security forces in the last day. Pakistani Taliban spokesman Azam Tariq told CNN by phone that only one Taliban fighter had been killed and three injured in that time. He said the anti-government forces had huge quantities of weapons which we got during the war against Russia and it is sufficient for us for many years, he said, presumably referring to the Soviet Unions 1979-1989 occupation of Afghanistan.