Security forces kill 12 more terrorists in Balochistan's Mach

By
Zarmeen Zehra
In this representational file photo, Pakistani soldiers cordon off a street leading on the outskirts of Peshawar on September 2, 2016. — AFP
In this representational file photo, Pakistani soldiers cordon off a street leading on the outskirts of Peshawar on September 2, 2016. — AFP

  • Sources say 21 terrorists killed in Mach operation.
  • Security forces are continuing clearance operation.
  • The incidents come just days ahead of Feb 8 vote.


The security forces Wednesday killed of 12 more terrorists in Balochistan’s Mach city, taking the death toll of militants to 22, as the country witnesses a rise in terrorism.

The sources said the operation that began on January 30 thwarted terrorists’ attacks, while a clearance operation was still underway in the restive province’s city.

The security forces had killed nine terrorists on Jan 30 — including three suicide bombers — and injured three in retaliatory actions following multiple terrorist attacks in Balochistan’s Mach and Kolpur towns.

The incidents come just days before the February 8 national elections, turning the situation volatile, as political actors and parties have also been targeted during electioneering.

As the forces clamp down on terrorists in the province, four brave security personnel embraced martyrdom along with two innocent civilians on Jan 30.

Terrorists also attacked multiple areas in Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), hampering electioneering ahead of the general polls.

Three separate hand grenade attacks were carried out against the Pakistan Peoples Party's (PPP) election offices in Quetta and Kalat's Mangochar — with the former incident wounding three people.

In a separate incident, the Awami National Party (ANP) also came under attack as assailants opened fire on the party workers in Chaman city resulting in the death of a worker identified as Zahoor Ahmed.

Furthermore, independent candidate Rehan Zeb Khan was shot dead in KP’s Bajaur district, leading to the postponement of the polls from where he was set to contest — NA-8 and PK-22.

With more than 128 million voters, various circles have raised concerns over the deteriorating security situation in the country, especially in the aforementioned provinces, with some lawmakers even moving the Senate seeking poll delay in light of security threats.

However, the military's top commanders have expressed resolve not to allow anyone to indulge in violence in the name of political activity and sabotage the quintessential democratic exercise of conduct of free and fair elections.

“The Pakistan Army will perform assigned duties as per the constitutional mandate, under the guidelines of ECP. No one would be allowed to indulge in violence in the name of political activity and sabotage the quintessential democratic exercise of conduct of free and fair elections,” the army’s top brass said.