| GEO Pakistan|
| All Swat cleared: Defence Minister|
| Updated at: 2334 PST, Thursday, June 18, 2009|
ISLAMABAD: Minister for Defence Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar Thursday said the picturesque Swat valley has been cleared from the miscreants, the operation is virtually over and targets have been achieved.
In an Interview with a local news channel, he said initially armed forces were unable to take any serious action because of the presence of population there. Once the trouble zone is vacated there was no stopping and the whole operation in Swat valley is virtually ended.
He was optimistic that internally displaced persons (IDPs) would start moving to their native places from Saturday the June 20.The process of returning home would take about a month and a half.
The next offensive would be against Baitullah Mehsood. The Mehsood threat is not very serious but he is creating chaos and unrest by sending suicide bombers across Pakistan.
Right now government does not have any specific information about the whereabouts of Baitullah Mehsood. As soon as information is received, forces will hit him with the support of F-16 and precise laser guided bombs, he concluded.