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Pakistan investigates NATO strikes: spokesman

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad, Oct 1, IRNA -- Pakistan said on Thursday that it is investigating fresh NATO airstrikes in its tribal region, which has killed at least three soldiers.

NATO helicopters in a pre-dawn shelling hit a Pakistani border check post in Kurrum agency, killing three soldiers and injuring three others, security officials said.

It is the third NATO airstrike in Pakistani tribal region in a week.

On September 26 and 27, NATO helicopters shelled Pakistani areas and claimed killing of some 50 insurgents.

Foreign Office spokesman Abdul Basit said that the concerned authorities are currently investigating the incident and the response will follow as soon as the investigation is completed.

“Pakistan will not allow violation of its territorial borders and protect sovereignty at all costs,” the spokesman said.

Responding to the queries of media persons in his weekly briefing in Islamabad, Abdul Basit said that Pakistan lodged a strong protest with the NATO over the violation of its territory

“We have been assured that the ISAF and NATO forces will strictly abide by their mandate and not infringe on the country's sovereignty,” he said.

Responding to a question, he reiterated Pakistan's commitment that it will not allow its territory to be used for terrorism in any part of the world.

Correspondents in the region said that NATO helicopters carried out two strikes in Kurram Agency on Thursday.

They said that the dead bodies and injured soldiers were airlifted from the region and the injured were shifted to a military hospital in Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

A NATO spokesman has reported said that the first strike was carried out at 5 a.m. after a tip was received about the presence of militants.

Officials say that Pakistan has stopped hundreds of oil tankers and trucks, carrying supplies for NATO forces in Afghanistan, in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

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