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Gunmen kill seven coast guards

Updated July 28, 2013

QUETTA, July 27: Seven Pakistan Coast Guards personnel were killed and seven others injured when gunmen attacked a PCG checkpost in Kuldan area of Gwadar district early on Saturday morning.

The banned Baloch Liberation Front (BLF) organisation claimed responsibility for the attack.

Sources said that unidentified armed men riding a vehicle and a motorcycle stormed the PCG checkpost, about 64km from Gwadar town towards the Pak-Iran border at around 3am, and attacked it with rockets and guns.

At least seven PCG personnel died and as many suffered injuries.

Home Secretary Akbar Hussain Durrani confirmed the casualties.

The sources said that after the attack a heavy exchange of fire took place between the coastguards and the assailants in which two attackers were injured.

“It was a pre-dawn rocket attack on the checkpost that left seven soldiers dead and injured seven others,” Mr Durrani told Dawn, adding the dead and the injured had been taken to the Pakistan Navy hospital.

He said rescue teams and law-enforcement agencies personnel, including coastguards and Levies, had been sent to the scene of the attack. A search operation was under way.

The sources said that assailants took away official weapons and other belongings of the coastguards.

They said that 14 PCG personnel manned the checkpost located close to the border with Iran. They are tasked to keep vigil on those crossing the border illegally and drug and human trafficking.

Gohram Baloch, a spokesman for BLF, told media by satellite phone that 25 PCG men had been killed in the attack and another two had been taken hostage.

He said that during the attack two BLF men suffered bullet injuries in their hands. Three AK-47 rifles, three machineguns, a G-3 rifle, live rounds, a vehicle and a motorcycle were taken away by the BLF men, he added.

On July 21, 2012, a PCG checkpost was attacked in Sansar area of Gwadar in which eight personnel lost their lives.

AFP adds: “Around 24 gunmen armed with rockets and heavy weapons, attacked the checkpost and killed seven coastguard officials,” Mr Durrani said.