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Despite Afghan objections, Pakistan has begun fencing and mining sections of the mutual border (file photo) (epa)
January 11, 2007 (RFE/RL) -- The NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan says a large number of militants were killed overnight after crossing the border from Pakistan.
NATO spokesman Major Dominic Whyte told RFE/RL that two groups of militants were seen by both NATO and Afghan government troops in the Bermel district of Paktika Province. He said the militants were attacked by both NATO warplanes and Afghan artillery.
"Initial battle-damage estimates indicate that as many as 150 insurgents were killed," Whyte said. "The insurgents were observed congregating together in a large number in several trucks and they were armed and appeared to be gathering for a potential attack. The insurgents had been observed gathering in Pakistan itself and, indeed, had actually crossed the border [into Afghanistan.]"
The Afghan Defense Ministry estimates that about 80 militants were killed in the operation.