A Balochistan Frontier Corps soldier was martyred while four terrorists were killed as security forces thwarted an attack on a naval base in Turbat last night, the military’s media affairs wing said on Tuesday.

In a statement, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said that terrorists attempted to attack PNS Siddique in Turbat last night. It said that the attempt was foiled due to the “swift and effective response by the troops ensuring the safety and security of personnel and assets”.

“Security forces in the vicinity were immediately mobilised to support the naval troops. Synergetic and effective response by the armed forces enabled killing of all four terrorists in ensuing joint clearance operation,” it said.

The ISPR said that during the intense fire exchange, 24-year-old Sepoy Noman Fareed of the Balochistan Frontier Corps embraced martyrdom.

The incident comes days after security forces foiled a militant attack on the Gwadar Port Authority Complex. According to the ISPR, last week a group of eight terrorists attempted to enter the complex but were successfully thwarted by security forces. Two soldiers were martyred while eight terrorists were killed.

Makran Commissioner Saeed Ahmed Umrani had earlier told Dawn that heavy exchange of fire and explosions were reported from the vicinity of Turbat airport on Monday night.

“The armed men attacked from three sides of the airport boundary, but security forces responded immediately and foiled their attempt to infiltrate the premises,” he said over the phone from Turbat.

It should be mentioned that PNS Siddique is among the biggest naval air stations in the country.

Locals said that over a dozen blasts were heard in Turbat town, while the firing, which began around 10pm, continued late into the night.

The banned Balochistan Liberation Army claimed that its Majeed Brigade was behind the attack.

PM reaffirms Pakistan’s commitment to eradicating terrorism

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif commended security forces for foiling the terrorist attack. According to state broadcaster Radio Pakistan, the premier acknowledged that the militants were neutralised due to the timely and effective action of security forces, “preventing a potentially significant loss”.

He also reaffirmed Pakistan’s unwavering commitment to eradicating the menace of terrorism. PM Shehbaz emphasised that the entire nation firmly stood behind the country’s courageous security forces.

President Asif Ali Zardari praised the security forces’ “swift and effective response” to “frustrate the attack”.

In a statement issued by the President House, he lauded the bravery of the security forces and paid tribute to the martyred sepoy. The president vowed to eliminate terrorism from the country.

Interior Minister Mohsin Naqvi also hailed the country’s security forces. In a statement, he said security forces prevented a tragedy by taking timely action. “The security forces bravely foiled the nefarious intentions of the terrorists,” he said.

“The nation stands by the armed forces in the war against terrorism,” he said, reiterating the government’s resolve to eradicate militancy.

Punjab Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz acknowledged the courage and bravery of the country’s security forces, adding that the government’s resolve for eradicating terrorism was unwavering.

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

In November, 14 Pakistan Army soldiers were martyred after militants attacked two vehicles of security forces in Gwadar. The military vehicles came under attack while moving from Pasni to Ormara in the coastal district.

According to a security report issued by the Centre for Research and Security Studies last month, Pakistan experienced 97 militant attacks in February, resulting in 87 fatalities and 118 injuries.

The report highlighted a significant escalation in violence in Balochistan, juxtaposed with a decline in tribal districts and mainland KP.

4 terrorists killed in DI Khan IBO

In a separate statement, the ISPR said four terrorists were killed as security forces conducted an intelligence-based operation (IBO) in Dera Ismail Khan on Monday.

“During the conduct of operation, after an intense fire exchange, four terrorists, including terrorist Mustafa, terrorist Qismatullah and terrorist Islamuddin were sent to hell,” the ISPR said.

“The killed terrorists remained actively involved in numerous terrorist activities against security forces and killing of innocent civilians. Weapons, ammunition and explosives were also recovered from killed terrorists,” it said.

“Locals of the area appreciated the operation. Sanitisation operation is being carried out to eliminate any other terrorist found in the area as the security forces are determined to wipe out the menace of terrorism from the country,” the ISPR stated.

Grenade blast near offices of sensitive institutions in Noshki

Later in the day, a grenade blast took place near offices of sensitive institutions in Noshki, according to Deputy Commissioner (DC) Habibullah Musakhel.

“A hand grenade fell near the offices of a sensitive institution and exploded with a loud bang,” he said, adding that there was no loss of life.

The DC said the perpetrators also opened fire after the blast. He added that the police and other law enforcement officials had surrounded the area and were searching for the culprits.

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