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‘Pakistani forces kill five militants’

Pakistani paramilitary forces today killed five members of a Sunni militant outfit notorious for sectarian attacks and linked to the Islamic State group, officials said. Frontier Corps troops stormed a compound in the southwestern province of Balochistan and killed them in a gunfight, paramilitary spokesman Khan Wasay told AFP. 

The militants belonged to Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), which works both with Islamic State and Al-Qaeda in Pakistan, he said. Provincial home secretary Akbar Harifal confirmed the details of the clash in the village of Huramzai in Pashin district, 35 kilometres north of the provincial capital Quetta. 

Separately, security forces arrested 10 Baloch separatists after a gunfight in Khuzdar district, provincial home minister Sarfraz Bugti said. Mineral-rich Balochistan province has been plagued for decades by a separatist insurgency and sectarian killings. In August a suicide bombing at a Quetta hospital claimed by the Islamic State group and the Jamaat-ul-Ahrar wing of the Pakistani Taliban killed 73 people, including many of the city’s lawyer community. They had gone there to mourn the fatal shooting of a colleague. 
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