Pakistani authorities say they have found the decapitated body of a police constable near the main city in Swat Valley.
Officials said the constable's body was discovered outside Mingora
Tuesday. The constable was believed to have been kidnapped last week by
Taliban militants in Swat.
In Pakistan's North Waziristan tribal region, a suicide car bomber
rammed his vehicle into a police checkpoint, killing one person and
wounding at least two others.
Elsewhere, Pakistani authorities said they have taken into custody 11
boys who allegedly were trained by Taliban militants to become suicide
bombers. Officials said soldiers recovered the boys, the youngest being
nine years old, during operations against Taliban militants in and
around Swat Valley.
North West Frontier Province Senior Minister Bashir Bilour says the
government is working to rehabilitate the children. He says some of
them have been indoctrinated to such a great extent that they call
their parents infidels.
Pakistan's government accuses the militants of forcibly recruiting
young boys in the tribal region, indoctrinating them in extremist
ideology and training some as suicide bombers.
The military says more than 1,800 militants have been killed since it
launched its offensive about three months ago in the area, following
the collapse of a peace deal to impose strict Islamic law (Sharia) in Swat Valley.
Casualty figures given by the military are difficult to verify because journalists do not have access to the war front.
The fighting has displaced nearly two million people. The United States
has pledged $330 million to help relocation efforts, and the European
Union has pledged $300 million.
After his visit to the region last week, U.S. special envoy for
Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke said more international
assistance is needed. The Pakistani government says it will need $2.6
billion for reconstruction and rehabilitation.
The government began helping thousands of people return home over the
past few weeks after declaring the area mostly cleared of Taliban
fighters. But reports of skirmishes persist, and the military has
admitted there are "pockets of resistance" in the mountainous terrain.