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Pakistani army claims advances

ISLAMABAD — The Pakistani army claimed advances in its 8-day-old offensive in a Taliban stronghold along the Afghan border Sunday, while the militants' chief warned of more terrorist attacks around the country unless the military halted the assault.

The army moved into South Waziristan vowing to crush a militant network it says is behind 80 percent of the suicide bombings over the last three years. Washington has encouraged the operation because militants there are believed to shelter al-Qaida leaders and attack Western troops in Afghanistan.

Over the past three weeks, the Taliban have carried out a string of bombings and commando-style raids across the country in response to the air and ground offensive, killing about 200 people.

In a phone call from an undisclosed place, Taliban chief Hakimullah Mehsud threatened to turn Pakistan into "another Afghanistan or Iraq" unless the assault stopped.

In an attack Sunday, a suicide bomber blew up a car packed with explosives near Jhelum city, killing a patrol officer.

Pakistani army claims advances 10/25/09 [Last modified: Monday, November 7, 2011 4:51pm]
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