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QUETTA: Six personnel of the Balochistan Levies Force were martyred in a terrorist attack on a check-post in the Sanjavi area of Ziarat district.

Official sources said that the attack took place sometime in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

The banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed responsibility for the attack and the killing of Levies Force personnel.

The sources said that the six members of the law enforcement agency were posted at the check-post in Lal Katai on Sanjavi-Loralai road, which was attacked by assailants with heavy weapons.

“The six Levies Force personnel manning the check-post were martyred in the terrorist attack,” said Deputy Commissioner of Ziarat Qadir Bakhsh Pirkani, adding that the attackers took away official weapons of the Levies Force personnel.

“It was a sudden attack. The attackers armed with automatic weapons came on motorcycles,” he told AFP.

Residents of the area informed the local administration of Sanjavi about the incident in the morning.

Personnel of Levies Force and Frontier Corps cordoned off the area and shifted the bodies to hospital.

“The six victims received multiple bullet injuries which caused their death on the spot,” hospital officials said. The bodies were later handed over to the local administration after a post-mortem examination.

The victims were identified as Mehtab-ud-Din, Abdul Hakeem, Faqir Mohammad, Mohammad Usman, Abdul Shakoor and Dad Mohammad.

Security forces have launched a combing operation in the area.

Bodies of the six victims were taken to Sanjavi where funeral prayers were offered which were attended by Balochistan Minister for Public Health Engineering Noor Mohammad Dummar, Commandant of Loralai Scouts Col Aamir Mukhtiar, the commissioner of Sibi division, the deputy commissioner of Ziarat and a large number of people.

Later the bodies were handed over to the relatives of the deceased who took the bodies to their native towns for burial.

The TTP, in a message to the media, claimed responsibility for the attack.

Balochistan Chef Minister Jam Kamal Khan Alyani and Home Minister Ziaullah Langove condemned the killing of the Levies Force personnel and conveyed their grief and sorrow to the families on the death of their loved ones.

Published in Dawn, March 21st, 2019