159 militants arrested in Swat Valley, weapons confiscated

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(14 Sep 2009)
1. Wide shot of village
2. Wide shot of members of local militia listening to address holding arms
3. Mid shot of militiamen
4. Local militia chanting “God is great”, led by man on podium
5. Mid of militiamen and members of the Pakistani army walking in valley
6. SOUNDBITE: (Urdu) Bakht Mohammad, militiaman:
“We are together to stop terrorists. That is why we founded this private militia of local people, so nobody becomes a terrorist in the future. We want peace in the area.”
7. Six young men lined up against wall
8. Mid shot of Taliban members who were arrested in the area
9. Wide shot of seized ammunition lying on the table
10. Mid shot of seized weapons lying on the table
11. Wide shot of pressure cookers allegedly used by the Taliban to make Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs)
12. Various of Taliban who surrendered
13. Various of seized ammunition lying on the table
14. SOUNDBITE: (English) Brigadier Salman Akber, Pakistani Army Area Commander:
“128 people have surrendered. And we are at this moment showing you 104 people. 24 of them have already been sent to the detention centres.”
15. Wide of armed Pakistani soldiers on mountain
16. Mid shot of weapon of Pakistani soldier
Pakistan’s army killed 16 suspected militants in its latest operations in the northwestern Swat Valley and neighbouring Dir district, and more than hundred alleged militants surrendered to security forces, military officials claimed on Monday.
One Pakistani soldier died and another was wounded, an army statement covering the previous 24-hour period added.
In Piochar, a main insurgent base in Swat, Colonel Amir Khan told reporters 159 alleged militants had surrendered Monday, including six boys purportedly recruited by the Taliban to be suicide bombers.
Brigadier Salman Akber, a Pakistani Army Area Commander, put the total number of surrendered insurgents at 128. He said 24 of them had been sent to detention centres.
The discrepancy in numbers could not immediately be explained, and limited access to the region makes it difficult to independently confirm information provided by the military.
In recent weeks, the army has reported an increasing flow of insurgents voluntarily surrendering.
Under pressure from the West, Pakistan in May launched an offensive in Swat, which had fallen largely under Taliban control.
It claims to have cleared most of Swat of the militants and killed more than 1,800 of them, although sporadic militant attacks continue.
The army announced the capture last week of five top Swat Taliban commanders, and Interior Minister Rehman Malik said Sunday authorities were now closing in on Swat Taliban chief Maulana Fazlullah.

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