Four soldiers were martyred in North Waziristan's Hassan Khel area during an exchange of fire with terrorists who attempted to infiltrate into Pakistan from Afghanistan in the night between March 23 and March 24, the military's media affairs wing said on Thursday.

According to a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), a group of terrorists tried to infiltrate into Pakistan at midnight, but their attempt was foiled due to the "alertness and timely response of army troops".

The terrorists, however, retaliated by opening fire, the statement said, adding that the soldiers "reciprocated in a befitting manner".

"The terrorists, having failed, fled ... and as per intelligence reports, suffered heavy casualties," the statement read, adding that four soldiers embraced martyrdom after fighting "gallantly" during the gun battle.

The martyred soldiers have been identified as 34-year-old Lance Havaldar Wajahat Alam, who was a resident of Gilgit-Baltistan's Ghizer area, 25-year-old Sepoy Sajjid lnayat, a resident of Sheikhupura, 32-year-old Sepoy Maqbool Hayat, a resident of Ghizer, and 22-year-old Sepoy Sajjid Ali, who was a resident of Skardu.

"The Pakistan Army is determined to eliminate the menace of terrorism and such sacrifices of our brave soldiers further strengthen our resolve," the ISPR statement said.

Earlier this month, security forces had killed another four militants during two intelligence-based operations North Waziristan.

One of the operations was conducted in Maddi Khel and the other in Bobar Gap.

Weapons and ammunitions were seized from the terrorists, the ISPR had said at the time.

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