2 officers among 7 soldiers martyred in terrorist attack on post in North Waziristan: ISPR

Published March 16, 2024
(From left to right): This image shows Lt Col Kashif Ali, NK Khurshid, Sep Raja, Hav Sabir, Sep Sajjad and Captain Ahmed Babar.— Photos provided by ISPR
(From left to right): This image shows Lt Col Kashif Ali, NK Khurshid, Sep Raja, Hav Sabir, Sep Sajjad and Captain Ahmed Babar.— Photos provided by ISPR

Seven soldiers — including two officers — were martyred in a terrorist attack on a security forces’ post in the Mir Ali area of North Waziristan district, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said on Saturday.

Six terrorists were also neutralised in the subsequent clearance operation.

According to the military’s media affairs wing, in the early hours of March 16, 2024, a group of six terrorists attacked a security forces’ post in the general area of Mir Ali of North Waziristan District.

“As own troops foiled the initial attempt of intrusion, the terrorists rammed an explosives-laden vehicle into the post, followed by multiple suicide bombing attacks, which led to the collapse of a portion of a building, resulting into shahadat (martyrdom) of five brave sons of the soil,” ISPR added.

The martyrs of the initial attack include Havildar Sabir, a resident of District Khyber, Naik Khurshid (resident of District Lakki Marwat), Sepoy Nasir (resident of District Peshawar), Sepoy Raja (resident of District Kohat) and Sepoy Sajjad (resident of District Abbottabad).

“During the conduct of the ensuing clearance operation, own troops led by Lieutenant Colonel Kashif, effectively engaged and killed all six terrorists,” ISPR said.

“However, during the intense exchange of fire, leading his troops from the front, Lieutenant Colonel Syed Kashif Ali (age: 39 years, resident of Karachi) and Captain Muhammad Ahmed Badar (age: 23 years, resident of District Talagang), having fought gallantly, paid the ultimate sacrifice and embraced shahadat,” ISPR added.

The military’s media wing said a sanitisation operation was being conducted to eliminate any other terrorist present in the area, “as security forces of Pakistan are determined to wipe out the menace of terrorism from the country and such sacrifices of our brave soldiers further strengthen our resolve”.

The funeral of the martyrs was later held at Bannu Cantt.

“The martyrs will be buried in their native areas with full military honours. However, a large number of military and civil officials, including General Officer Commanding Major General Anjum Riaz attended the funeral prayers,” the ISPR said.

“Pakistan Army will continue to render sacrifices till the last drop of blood for the defence of the dear motherland,” the ISPR added.

Condemnation, condolence pour in

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and President Asif Ali Zardari, in separate statements, condemned the attack.

The prime minister called the attack a “coward” move by the terrorists.

“The security forces have foiled the sinister designs of the terrorists,” PM Sharif said, according to the prime minister’s office.

“I, and the whole nation, are proud of the martyrs who sacrificed lives,” he said.

He prayed for the departed souls and offered condolences to the bereaved families.

President Zardari condemned the terrorist attack and extended condolences to the bereaved families.

In a post on X, the head of state paid tribute to army officers and soldiers who embraced martyrdom in the attack. He also expressed the nation’s commitment to completely eradicate terrorism.

The president prayed to elevate the rank of martyrs and give patience to their families.

Foreign Minister Ishaq Dar said the nation was united in combatting terrorism in all its forms.

National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq also condemned the attack.

According to a post on X by the National Assembly’s official account, the speaker expressed deep sorrow and regret over the loss of precious lives, and paid tribute to the martyrs including Lt Col Kashif and Captain Ahmed.

“The nation will never forget the sacrifices of its soldiers,” the statement quoted the National Assembly speaker as saying. “Terrorists are following the nefarious intentions of the enemy in which they will never succeed.”

The speaker said that the entire nation was standing together with the security forces to crush the nefarious intentions of terrorists.

Resurgent terrorism

Pakistan has witnessed an uptick in terror activities in 2023 year, especially in KP and Balochistan after the banned militant Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan ended its ceasefire with the government in November 2022.

The ISPR said earlier this month 10 militants were killed in two separate operations by security forces in the North Waziristan district. It added that Pakistan expected the Afghan government to fulfil its obligations and deny the use of Afghan soil by terrorists.

Last month, a late-night attack on a police station in Dera Ismail Khan was repulsed. Gunmen had mounted an attack using heavy weapons but fled in the cover of darkness when police personnel fired back.

In December last year, 23 soldiers were martyred and more than 30 troops wounded after militants belonging to the Tehreek-i-Jihad Pakistan (TJP) stormed a compound used by the military in Dera Ismail Khan’s Daraban area.

According to an annual security report issued by the Centre for Research and Security Studies, Pakistan witnessed 1,524 violence-related fatalities and 1,463 injuries from 789 terror attacks and counter-terror operations in 2023 — marking a record six-year high.

KP and Balochistan were the primary centres of violence, accounting for over 90 per cent of all fatalities and 84pc of attacks, including incidents of terrorism and security forces operations.

Additional input from APP.



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