Five Pakistan Army soldiers were killed in cross fire as militants from Afghanistan attacked three border posts in Mohmand Agency on Sunday night.
The military’s media wing, Inter Services Public Relations, said, “Last night terrorists from across the border attempted physical attack on three Pakistan border posts in Mohmand Agency.”
“Effective presence, vigilance and response repulsed terrorists’ attempt,” the statement added. Over 10 militants were reportedly killed.
The soldiers killed during the attack have been identified as Nk Sanaullah, Nk Safdar, Sepoy Altaf, Sepoy Nek Muhammad and Sepoy Anwar.
Army chief General Qamar Jawed Bajwa appreciated the response by Pakistani troops to last night’s cross border attack. He emphasised the need for physical presence on the Afghan side of the border for effective border security. “Terrorists are common threat and must be denied freedom of movement/action along the border,” the army chief said.
Gen Bajwa also expressed grief on the loss of precious lives and hailed the sacrifices made by the soldiers.
The latest incident comes during already tense relationship between Pakistan and Afghanistan. At the heart of the problem is Kabul’s continued allegations against Pakistan for providing what it called ‘safe havens’ to terrorists launching the cross border raids. Islamabad has its own list of grievances starting from weak border controls to tacit support being provided by Afghan intelligence agencies to the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and other anti-Pakistan elements.
Despite Afghanistan’s relentless campaign, Pakistan is still seeking to resolve all differences through dialogue. Following the recent terrorist attacks in Afghanistan, Gen Qamar telephoned Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani to condemn the latest wave of violence and to offer his support to fight menace of terrorism jointly. The army chief, however, urged the Afghan president to stop blame game because it only served the purpose of those who never wanted smooth relationship between the two neighbors.
Ghani, nevertheless, stuck to his tirade against Pakistan and said his country wanted ‘serious talks’ about the future of its ties with the neighboring country. The continued blame game has prevented the army chief from finalising a plan for a crucial visit to Kabul.