Pakistani army kill ISIS militant amid clashes with Taliban

Pakistan's armed forces face an array of militant groups on the border with Afghanistan

Pakistani Army forces killed a member of ISIS in a border clash in Paktika province in Afghanistan. EPA
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Pakistani soldiers have killed a member of ISIS in the rugged, semi-mountainous borderland between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

It comes as five security forces were killed in clashes with Tehreek-ei-Taliban-e-Pakistan the local branch of the movement that has waged an insurgency against the government since around 2007.

Afghan news agency Tolo reported the border clash in Paktika province in Afghanistan on Wednesday, saying several Afghan Taliban also died, including a commander in the local branch of the group.

Wednesday’s raid on ISIS occurred against a backdrop of stepped-up Pakistani army operations in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, where the army killed Shafi Ulla, a member of the group, and two other militants.

There has been a sharp rise in fighting in recent months since a ceasefire between the TTP and the government expired last year. The violence has also extended to attacks on foreigners in northern Pakistan, including Chinese business interests. In January, an attack on a mosque in Peshawar, which saw 84 people killed, and was claimed by the group.

The raid underscores the complex web of enemies the Pakistani army faces in the region, including Baloch separatists and the Taliban.

Last month, a UN report accused the Afghan branch of the movement of sheltering Al Qaeda in training camps across Afghanistan. The close relationship between the two militant movements was due to end under peace talks between Washington and the group in Doha, which secured the withdrawal of US forces from the country in 2021, but the new regime in Kabul has reneged on its promise.

Ullah was wanted by the Pakistani government, which alleges he was involved in attacks on security forces and had killed innocent civilians.

Security forces also seized weapons and ammunition from the hideout and were carrying out a clearance operation of the area, the military said.

Pakistan's military has carried out operations in recent years in the tribal belt along the Afghan border, which served as a safe haven for local and foreign militants for decades.

Updated: June 28, 2023, 3:42 PM