As political parties continue to target the armed forces, the past few weeks have seen a steady uptick in attacks against them near the Afghan border and in Balochistan. More than a dozen Pakistani soldiers have laid down their lives in defense of the country in a short amount of time, as a new wave of violence seems to be sweeping the region.
On 16 October, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Directorate stated that a Pakistan Army officer and five soldiers had been killed in North Waziristan in an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) attack on the security forces’ convoy by terrorists.
[There was a] “terrorist IED attack on security forces convoy near Razmak, North Waziristan. Resultantly 1 officer and 5 soldiers embraced Shahadat,” the ISPR said in a statement.
Those martyred were identified as Capt Umar Farooq, Naib Subedar Riaz Ahmed, Naib Subedar Shakeel Azad, Havaldar Younas Khan, Naik Muhammad Nadeem and Lance Naik Asmat Ullah.
In yet another shootout that took place between security forces and large number of terrorists on the Coastal Highway near Ormara, seven soldiers of FC Balochistan and an equal number of security guards were martyred.
“Such cowardly acts by inimical elements to sabotage peace, stability, and economic development in Balochistan shall never be allowed to succeed,” the ISPR said. “Moreover, these acts cannot subdue the resolve of our forces which are determined to defend the motherland, even at the cost of their lives,” the statement added.
On October 14th, Havaldar Tanveer, a Pakistani soldier, was killed while another sustained injuries when militants from across the Afghan border opened fire on the Pakistan Army post in Bajaur tribal district.
According to the the ISPR: “Terrorists opened fire from across the border on the Pakistan Army post along the Pak-Afghan border in Bajaur. Resultantly Havaldar Tanveer embraced Shahadat while one soldier got injured.”
On 23 September, in an attack on Bajaur, Sepoy Sabir Shah was martyred when Afghanistan-based militants attacked a checkpost.
During an intelligence based operation later that week, two soldiers were martyred in a crossfire with unidentified militants near Spelga village in North Waziristan tribal district.
A United Nations report in July said more than 6,000 Pakistani insurgents were hiding in Afghanistan, most belonging to the Pakistani Taliban. International observers and human rights agencies have noted that India is running terrorist training camps in Afghanistan; militants from these camps are attacking Pakistani forces in Waziristan and Balochistan.