KHYBER/BAJAUR AGENCIES - Army Chief General Raheel Sharif yesterday paid a surprise visit to Tirah Valley and examined the front line posts.

Flanked by Corps Commander Hidayatullah and Frontier Corps Inspector General (IGFC) Shaheen Mazhar Khattak, Raheel Sharif inspected the posts located on Pak-Afghan border, Tirah. He was briefed on the security situation in the area. He also addressed the troops holding positions at the front line posts.

Following clearing of plain areas of Khyber Agency in Daraghlum, Bia-Daraghlum, Khyber-1 and 2 operations launched in 2009, Khyber-3 has been kicked off in the mountainous area of Tirah Valley.

The militants of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Bara-based Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) and other defunct organizations took refuge in the dense forest and hilly territory of Rajgal, Koki Khel of Tirah after purge operations were initiated in downtowns. To eliminate militancy, a ruthless operation was inevitable to clear the bordering area of the country.

According to the local tribesmen, Rajgal has a sharing border with Afghanistan district Nazyaan, an easy way to cross into Afghanistan after committing terrorism in Pakistan.

SOLDIER KILLED IN BLAST: A soldier was killed and a civilian injured in a blast in Chargo Gondai area of Salarzai tehisl in Bajaur Agency yesterday.

Officials of the local administration averred personnel of security forces were carrying water to their post from a nearby place when a device planted along the way went off. The bomb was detonated by a remote control.

After the explosion, local people and personnel of Bajaur levies reached the spot and launched efforts to trace the miscreants. No one claimed responsibility for the blast.

Meanwhile, two soldiers got injured when unknown miscreants opened indiscriminate firing from across the border at the troops here in Tirah Valley. The wounded troops who were identified as Ghulam Yaseen and Sajid were shifted to Combined Military Hospital, Peshawar, for medical aid, the forces said.