Pakistan Army captain, sepoy martyred in cross-border attack from Afghanistan

Captain Junaid Hafeez and Sepoy Reham were martyred in the attack on a border post


RAWALPINDI: A cross-border attack by terrorists from Afghanistan in Pakistan's Bajaur Agency led to the martyrdom of two Pakistan Army troops, said the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) on Monday.

Captain Junaid Hafeez and Sepoy Raham were martyred in the attack on a border post of the Pakistan Army.

Four other Army troops were injured in the assault on the border post. 

At least eight terrorists were also killed in the attack and others were injured in retaliatory fire from the Army. 

The Army's media wing added that remaining terrorists withdrew across the border after sustaining casualties. 

"Absence of Afghan writ on Afghan side of the border like many other areas facilitate terrorists to undertake such attempts," said the ISPR.

More efforts required on Afghanistan's side of border

DG ISPR Major General Asif Ghafoor, in a series of tweets, said Pakistan has done its part and has cleared areas on its side of the border from terrorist presence. 

He referred to the martyrdom of the soldiers as the price Pakistan is paying for the security vacuum on the Afghan side of the border. 

Elaborating further, he said more efforts and enhanced presence along the border is required by all stakeholders, including establishments of new posts, border fencing and increased patrolling. 

Ghafoor added that the lives of soldiers and civilians on both sides of the border are precious and further stated it requires the elimination of terrorists and their sanctuaries in Afghanistan.  

Attacks originating from Afghanistan by militants have become more regular as militants have established sanctuaries in Afghanistan. 

PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz, in a tweet on Twitter, prayed for the martyred Army personnel and for fortitude for the bereaved families.

PTI leader Shireen Mazari questioned the presence of NATO and Afghan forces on the Afghan side of the border and said military forces present in Afghanistan need to act against terrorist sanctuaries. 

On Nov 9, an Army sepoy, Mohammad Ilyas, was martyred during an exchange of fire with terrorists in Khyber Agency.

Terrorists had opened fire at multiple places at the newly established Pakistani posts in Rajgal Valley, exploiting the absence of any control in Afghan border areas.

On October 3, another soldier had embraced martyrdom after terrorists fired from across the Afghan border on a border post.

The incident had occurred at the recently cleared area around Mustil pass, an important passage from Afghanistan into Rajgal, in Khyber Agency.

The martyred soldier was identified by ISPR as Naib Subedar Azher Ali.

The army in August announced the successful completion of Operation Khyber-4 in the Rajgal area of Khyber Agency.

In a press conference, Director-General ISPR Major General Asif Ghafoor had announced that 253 square kilometers had been cleared of militants' presence.

In order to create a more permanent security presence in the volatile area, the army also set up 91 check posts in Rajgal Valley.

Operation Khyber-4 was launched to stop infiltration of terrorists from across the Pak-Afghan border.