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Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif scotches speculation of Taleban offensive

Published on Jan 29, 2014 8:40 PM

ISLAMABAD (AFP) - Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday dismissed speculation he would launch an offensive against the Taleban following a wave of bloody attacks, saying peace talks deserved another chance.

Mr Sharif also called on militants to observe a ceasefire and named a committee that includes two leading journalists to assist in dialogue efforts.

The government has come under fire for failing to set a strategy to respond to a surge in militant violence which has seen 114 deaths in attacks since the start of the year, according to an AFP tally.

Mr Sharif was elected last year vowing to end a homegrown Taleban insurgency that has raged since 2007, by engaging militants in meaningful dialogue.

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