Pakistan Taliban 're-enters' Buner Saturday, April 25, 2009 02:56 Mecca time, 23:56 GMT
Pakistani Taliban fighters are reportedly re-entering Buner, hours after they pulled back from the district just 100km away from the capital Islamabad. Hoda Abdel Hamid, Al Jazeera's correspondent reporting from Pakistan, said there were reports of about 100 Taliban fighters heading back to Buner from the neighbouring Swat valley on Friday evening.
Taliban in Pakistan says the group has ordered its members to evacuate a region near Islamabad that was recently captured by the insurgents. Taliban chief in northwestern Swat valley, Mullah Fazlullah, on Friday ordered his fighters to withdraw from Buner district. "Our leader has ordered that Taliban should immediately be called back from Buner," Taliban spokesman Muslim Khan said. However, the insurgents armed with advanced weapons were reported to be patrolling streets in Buner on Friday morning. Last week, Taliban militants armed with heavy weapons reportedly took control of the district near the capital of the nuclear-armed country. The militants also entered the Shangla District on Thursday. Shangla was the third district after Swat and Buner to fall into the Taliban hands without any resistance from the government forces. The captured districts are located almost 100 km (60 miles) away from Islamabad. The withdrawal will bring a temporary relief to the government, which had put Islamabad on high alert following the Taliban's recent advances. entagon Chief Robert Gates has warned the Pakistani government that the US will severe its relations with Pakistan unless Islamabad crushes the Taliban-led insurgency.