PESHAWAR: With the residents of Kurram Agency struggling to recover from the trauma of the recent bombings in the region, the local authorities have issued a suicide attack alert for Parachinar.

Senior security officials convened a jirga of Turi and Bangash tribes in the capital of Kurram Agency on Thursday and directed them to take ‘extreme vigilance’ to prevent terrorist attack in the area.

A tribal elder told Dawn ahead of the meeting that a terrorist outfit, Jamaatul Ahrar, had planned to carry out a major attack in Parachinar within a week.

The officials informed the jirga that the ‘reconnaissance of the target’ had been completed.

They also shared the photo of the suspected bomber with participants.

The officials asked the elders to keep all sensitive places, including important buildings, hospitals and schools, under strict check.

“Extreme vigilance and heightened security measures are suggested,” the alert said. Following the alert, security forces increased patrols and established six additional checkpoints inside the town, where the red zone had already been created.

Uncertainty looms large in Kurram valley following a series of terrorist attacks in the area. Three powerful bomb blasts had rocked the area since last January.

The latest was a roadside bomb blast in Gowdar area on last Wednesday, which claimed 14 lives.

The local residents said security had been tightened in light of the bombing alert. They said personnel of the army and Frontier Corps began patrolling the streets.

Meanwhile, the local tribal elders expressed concern about their security after the issuance of suicide attack and said tight security arrangements had irritated the people.

During a news conference in Parachinar on Friday, they asked the government to take notice of the activities of the Islamic State militant group in areas bordering Afghanistan.

The elders said the administration instead of arresting culprits dug up security trench around Parachinar town and created a red zone badly affecting business and people’s movement.

Published in Dawn, April 29th, 2017

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