Pakistan military moves to stop ISIS encroachment near Afghan border
Pakistan's military says it has launched a major operation against so-called Islamic State (IS) in the north-western region along the Afghan border.Pakistan seems to do this from time to time while still ignoring mostly the Taliban that resides in its border. ISIS does present a threat to Islam as much as it does to those outside that religion so it is not too surprising to see Pakistan try to prevent them from establishing a presence in its borders.
A spokesman said militants had gained ground inside Afghanistan and had to be stopped from extending their influence.
He said the "Khyber 4" operation, backed by the air force, would focus on the mountainous Rajgal Valley area in Khyber Agency.
Pakistan has previously denied the presence of IS on its territory.
However, the growth of the group - often referred to as Daesh - in neighbouring Afghanistan has alarmed Islamabad and the group has claimed several attacks in Pakistan over the past two years.
"This operation was necessary because Daesh is getting established there and we have to stop the influence spreading into Pakistani territory through the Rajgal Valley," military spokesman Lt Gen Asif Ghafoor said.
IS in the region is mostly made up of former members of the Afghan and Pakistani Taliban and Gen Ghafoor reiterated the government's stance that the group has no established presence inside Pakistan.
"There is no organised infrastructure and we shall not allow them to establish themselves," he said.