Pakistani military pounds terrorist sanctuaries across Afghan border: sources

Web Desk – June 14, 2020

RAWALPINDI: Pakistani forces targeted terrorists based across the Pak-Afghan border, military sources said late Friday, following a week of deadly terrorist attacks in the country in which over 100 people were killed.

The strikes were conducted hours after Afghan embassy officials were summoned to the Pakistan Army’s General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, where they were handed over a list of 76 terrorists orchestrating terrorist activities in Pakistan from Afghan soil.

Pakistan has repeatedly warned Afghan authorities to prevent the use of their soil for terror activities in Pakistan.

In Friday’s meeting, it demanded the Afghan officials to take action against these terrorists or hand them over to it.

There has so far been no official confirmation regarding the developments from the Pakistani military or government, but informed sources told Geo News that the army targeted Jamaat-ul-Ahrar sanctuaries across the border of Khyber and Mohmand tribal agencies.

The camps were situated on the Afghan side of the porous border.

The army targeted four terrorist camps in Friday’s strikes, besides destroying a training compound of Jamatul Ahrar, sources added.

There have been reports that several militants, including the deputy commander of Jamatul Ahrar Adil Bacha, were killed in the strikes.

It is pertinent to note here that Jamat-ul-Ahrar, which has safe havens in Afghanistan and operates with impunity there, had claimed responsibility of last week’s terrorist attacks in Pakistan.

On Thursday, at least 88 people were martyred when a suicide bomber attacked the crowded Sufi shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar in Sehwan, injuring up to 343 others, according to DG Health Services Sindh.

The powerful blast took place inside the premises of the shrine as a dhamaal was taking place.

Earlier on Friday, Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa held a telephonic conversation with US General John Nicholson, Commander of Resolute Support Mission (RSM) in Afghanistan conveying his concerns over continued acts of terrorism in Pakistan from Afghanistan, the ISPR said in a statement.

“Most of the incidents in Pakistan are claimed by terrorist organisations with leadership hiding in Afghanistan,” Gen Bajwa told US General John Nicholson.

“The COAS said that such terrorist activities and inaction against them are testing our current policy of cross-border restraint,” the ISPR said in a statement.

The attack in Sehwan came as part of a recent wave of terrorist attacks in the country, and the fifth blast in less than a week targeting innocent people.

On February 15, three suicide bombers targeted Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the adjoining tribal areas leaving around seven people dead. One of the incidents occurred in Peshawar where a suicide bomber riding a motorbike hit a vehicle carrying civil judges, while two other suicide bombers blew themselves up at separate locations in Mohmand Agency.

Earlier to these, a suicide attack in Lahore on February 13 killed 14 people and wounded over 60 others.

On February 12, a cameraman, Taimur from Samaa News was killed when the channel’s DSNG van was attacked in Karachi.

Pakistani ambassador summoned

According to the Afghan media, Pakistani ambassador has been summoned by the Afghan government over recent shelling on eastern part of the country.

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