- Associated Press - Monday, October 17, 2011

PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) — Paramilitary forces raided a militant hideout in Pakistan’s rugged tribal region near the Afghan border Monday, sparking fighting that killed nine soldiers and 10 insurgents, officials said.

Clashes are common in the area, but the death toll from the fighting was unusually high on the Pakistani side.

The raid took place in Akka Khel village in the Khyber tribal area, said Farooq Khan, a senior local government official.

A military official confirmed the number of soldiers killed and said helicopter gunships were called in to provide support. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to reporters.

It was unclear which militant group was targeted in the raid, but the Pakistani Taliban frequently have clashed with security forces in Khyber. The group has declared war on the Pakistani government, partly because of its alliance with the United States.

The Pakistani Taliban also has targeted trucks carrying supplies through Khyber on their way to NATO troops in Afghanistan.



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