LANDI KOTAL, June 10: Four drivers were burnt alive when trucks carrying supplies for Nato forces in Afghanistan caught fire after militants attacked them with rockets in Jamrud on Monday.
Jamrud Assistant Political Agent Jahangir Azam Wazir said the incident took place near Shagai Fort on the main Peshawar-Torkham road at around 10am.
“The attackers were camouflaged in Khasadar force uniform and they were 20 to 25 in number,” Mr Wazir said.
“The attack was so sudden and quick that drivers could do nothing to save their lives as all the vehicles caught fire after being struck by rockets,” he added.
Three trucks were destroyed. However, two drivers were able to jump out of the burning vehicles and take refuge in a nearby security checkpost.
Nek Mohammad, an eyewitness, said he saw two vehicles engulfed in flames with the entire area cordoned off by security forces. It took the fire fighters four hours to bring the fire under control.
The dead were identified as Tikka Khan, Wajid Ali and Irfan, who belonged to Zakhakhel area. The fourth driver, Yar Alam, was a resident of Afghanistan.
The drivers who survived the attack were Marwat Khan and Khiyal Badin.
The vehicles were carrying military jeeps to Afghanistan.
Mr Wazir said four of the Khasadar officials posted at the checkposts in the area were suspended and one of them was detained. He the incident was being thoroughly investigated, adding that security for Nato vehicles would be strengthened.
At least 15 drivers and cleaners have lost their lives in recent weeks in similar attacks that have taken place in and around Jamrud tehsil.
AFP adds: Six people were killed in the attack, officials said.
“At least three Nato vehicles caught fire, four people died on the spot and two wounded…expired later in hospital,” Mr Azam Wazir said.
Another official, Asmatullah Wazir, said four Nato vehicles were hit and three of them caught fire in the attack in the Shagai area, 20km southeast of Landi Kotal.
A military official in Peshawar confirmed the militants had used rockets and automatic weapons.