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10 soldiers martyred in Balochistan’s Kech terror attack

Ten soldiers embraced martyrdom after terrorists attacked a security forces’ check post in Balochistan’s Kech district in the night between Tuesday and Wednesday, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said in a statement on Thursday.

The media wing of the military said that intense exchange of fire occurred in the “fire raid” by terrorists on the check post. It added that the forces repulsed the attack, killing one terrorist, injuring several others and apprehending three.

“Terrorists fire raid on Security Forces Check post in Kech, Balochistan on night 25/26 Jan[uary]. During intense exchange of fire, 1 terrorist was killed and several injured,” the ISPR said in the statement.

“While repulsing terrorists fire raid, 10 soldiers embraced shahadat,” it added.

According to the ISPR, a follow-up clearance operation was launched to apprehend the culprits. The media wing of the military further said that the forces arrested three terrorists in the ensuing clearance operation.

“3 Terrorists have been apprehended in follow up clearance operation, still in progress to hunt down perpetrators of the incident. Armed Forces are determined to eliminate terrorists from our soil no matter what the cost,” the statement concluded.

Meanwhile condolences poured in from the political leadership. Prime Minister Imran Khan expressed deep sorrow over the martyrdom of 10 Pak Army soldiers in Balochistan. He expressed sympathy with the families of the martyrs, said a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office.

“Every drop of the blood of the soldiers guarantees the security of the country,” the prime minister said. “The cowardly enemy faces a strong nation that has already defeated terrorism,” he added.

Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, in a separate statement, paid rich tributes to the martyred soldiers, saying that their sacrifices would not go in vain. “The martyred soldiers who sacrificed their lives for peace in Balochistan are the heroes of the nation,” he said.

Bilawal expressed his condolences to the heirs of the martyred soldiers. He said that anti-state elements were active in sabotaging peace of Balochistan, adding that the actions of the security forces were commendable.

Earlier this month, the Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies (PICSS), an Islamabad-based think tank, had said in a report that the country witnessed a 56% surge in militant attacks during the year 2021 after a consistent decline in the attacks during the previous six years.

The PICSS statistics showed that the militants have carried out 294 attacks in 2021 in which 395 people were martyred, including 186 civilians and 192 security forces personnel. At least 629 people were injured, including 400 civilians and 217 security forces personnel. Security forces also killed 188 militants and arrested at least 222 suspected militants during the year, the PICSS report had added.

Last week, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid addressed a press conference in the federal capital where he spoke about a recent rise in incidents of terrorism in the country. He said that his ministry had alerted the armed forces and civilian law-enforcements agencies, asking them to stay vigilant.

“Last night, the Interior Ministry told all armed forces, civil armed forces, IGs (inspectors general of police), chief secretaries, Frontier Corps IGs and Rangers IG to stay alert and watchful,” he told the press conference on Saturday.

Referring to an incident that took place in the Anarkali area of Lahore on Thursday last, the minister said that a “surge in the wave [of terrorism]” had been observed in the country in the recent past.

He told reporters that terrorism incidents rose by around “35% since August 15. “But this cannot bring down our nation, morale, spirit and armed forces,” the interior minister continued. The nation, he added, was “prepared to bravely face the challenge” of terrorism.

 

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