ISLAMABAD, July 27 (Xinhua) -- Pakistani security forces have cleared 70 percent area of the armed militants in their second stronghold in North Waziristan tribal region, the army said Sunday.
The armed forces last month launched a major offensive against the Pakistani Taliban and foreign militants in the region bordering Afghanistan after peace talks collapsed.
The army spokesman said a total of 570 "terrorists" had been killed since start of Operation codenamed "Zarb-e-Azb"
After clearance of Miranshah, the headquarters of North Waziristan, and some important areas -- Boya, Degan from terrorists, Mirali Town alongwith its neighboring villages, the second largest stronghold of terrorists had been 70 percent cleared by security forces till Sunday, he said.
"House to house search continues. Two huge ammunition factories with ammunition stock have been recovered," he said, adding that a total of 30 barrels filled with explosives and chemicals used for making IEDs were also recovered from two large underground tunnels during clearance of Mirali.
He said 34 security forces personnel had also been killed during the operation within North Waziristan alone.
The spokesman said that 98 terrorist hideouts and 30 IEDs making factories, three ammunition making factories, a number of suicide bomber training centres were destroyed during the operation.
The military said a huge cache of arms, communication equipment, propaganda literature had also been recovered.
The spokesman said the operation continues to achieve its objectives and is progressing well.
A massive IED, weighing 5,000 KGs, was recovered from Boya area and was diffused by the expert Counter IED team of Army Engineers. Later when detonated, it shook the entire agency and the explosion was heard as far as settled area, the army said.