Article published on the 2008-07-30 Latest update 2008-07-30 14:06 TU
Military offficials say that a gunbattle lasting five hours broke out when fighters loyal to pro-Taliban cleric Maulana Fazlullah attacked a security checkpost in the town of Sarbanda.
They say that 20 fighters were killed and that many others were wounded. The Taliban say that the army's casualty figures are "exaggerated" but admit that some of their members were wounded.
The army also claims to have cleared Taliban fighters out of a police station they had seized in Matta district.
Separately rebels burned a girls' school to the ground and blew up a hostel in the country's only ski resort. Yesterday they captured 30 troops and police officers when they stormed a checkpoint.
In May the government signed a ceasefire with Fazlulah's supporters, as part of its strategy of negotiating with Islamist militants.
Meanwhile, according to the New York Times, a top CIA official has flown to Islambad to present alleged proof of connections between the Pakistani intelligence services, the ISI, and groups responsible for a number of attacks, including the 7 July attack near the Indian embassy in Kabul which claimed 58 lives.
Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani met US President George Bush in Washington yesterday and declared that claims of such links are "not credible".
Pakistan on Tuesday denied Indian accusations that it had violated a ceasefire on the Line of Control which divides the state of Kashmir and said that none of its troops were killed, as claimed in the Indian media.
Islamabad claimed that Indian troops opened fire after Pakistani forces objected to them trying to build a post on the Pakistani side of the de facto border.
India maintains that the Pakistanis started the fierce gunbattle which lasted more than 12 hours.
2008-07-08 11:35 TU