PESHAWAR/KHAR/ISLAMABAD: Three army soldiers, including a captain, were killed in raid on a Pakistani check-post in the Bajaur tribal district from across the border, military said on Saturday.
The attack took place in Mamoond tehsil of Bajaur. Around two dozen militants armed with sophisticated weapons crossed from the Afghan province of Kunar to launch the pre-dawn ambush, officials said.
“Militants from across the border ambushed a check post. Two security personnel and an officer embraced martyrdom in the attack,” a security official in Bajaur told AFP by telephone.
A senior government official said the militants were forced to flee after troops retaliated.
No group has yet claimed responsibility but both officials said Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) was involved in the attack.
“It might be in retaliation for the Pakistan military offensive in North Waziristan,” the government official told AFP.
A senior military official in Peshawar, the region’s main city, confirmed the attack and death toll and told AFP that the troops were killed when a rocket hit a vehicle near the check post.
“Two soldiers were wounded and taken to the main hospital in Bajaur,” he said. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif condemned the attack on security forces in Bajaur Agency.
The Foreign Office strongly condemned the attack. “A strong protest has been lodged with the Afghan side in Islamabad and Kabul. It has been reiterated that Afghanistan should eliminate the terrorist sanctuaries and not allow its territory to be used against Pakistan. At a time when a monumental effort is underway through operation “Zarb-e-Azb” to eliminate all terrorists and their hideouts, Afghanistan’s cooperation remains essential for the success of our counter-terrorism endeavours,” a press release issued by the Foreign Office said.
Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Pervaiz Rasheed condemned the attack. According to a statement issued here, the minister said the entire nation was standing behind the fighting soldiers and terrorist would never succeed in their nefarious designs.
Meanwhile, the funeral prayers of the captain martyred in cross-border attack were offered.
Captain Mujahid was among three soldiers killed in the terrorist attack.
Large number of people including army officers participated in the funeral.
The body of the martyred army officer was later shifted to his native town for burial. Maulana Fazlullah, current head of the TTP which rose up against the Pakistani state in 2007, is believed to be possibly hiding across the border in Kunar.
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