A fourth terrorist attack in the last 48 hours rocked Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as the authorities foiled yet another militant attack on a checkpost in the provincial capital of Peshawar on Thursday.
The province has seen a surge in terrorist attacks — from improvised explosive device blasts to suicide bombings — since late last year when the Tehreek-e-Taliban (TTP) ended its ceasefire with Islamabad.
In the latest attack, which took place late at night, eight terrorists were sent running for their lives when police personnel fought back as the militants tried to attack the Riaz Shaheed Police Post in Peshawar’s Sarband area.
Cantt Waqas Rafiq, Superintendent of Police, said that since police were on “high alert,” they were able to repel the attack as terrorists attempted to target the checkpoint at night.
It wasn’t the first time militants had tried. On June 7, the checkpoint was attacked. The attack on the police station on Thursday was the 665th terrorist strike this year.
The new attack happened just hours after suicide bombers hit a compound in Khyber District’s Bara Bazar, killing four cops and ten others, including police officials and civilians.
According to authorities, two suicide attackers were apprehended at the police station next to Bara bazaar and the entrance to the tehsil headquarters complex, which houses the Bara authorities Station, government offices, and a counter-terrorism department (CTD) cell.
Prior to the Bara ambush, two KP police officers were killed and two others were injured in a shooting incident in Peshawar’s Regi district.
According to police, unidentified armed males opened fire on cops at the entry checkpoint near Regi Model Town Police Station before fleeing. Head Constable Wajid and driver Farman were among those killed.
Prior to it, on July 18, a suicide bomber detonated near a security forces vehicle in Peshawar’s Hayatabad neighborhood. The blast injured at least ten persons, including seven law enforcement officers.
In light of increased militancy, Pakistan’s government has cautioned Afghanistan not to provide safe havens for the proscribed TTP, a terrorist outfit that targets security personnel.
The Pakistan Army’s top brass has stated that the safe havens and freedom of action provided to terrorists of the outlawed TTP and other groups of that ilk in Afghanistan is one of the primary factors affecting Pakistan’s security.
Following the Afghan Taliban’s return to power in August 2021, Pakistan has seen an increase in terrorist assaults and has urged interim rulers to take serious action against terrorists, notably the TTP, responsible for cross-border attacks.
Terrorist activity in Pakistan increased by 79% in the first half of 2023, according to a data analysis produced by the independent think tank Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies (PICSS).
On Geo News’ morning broadcast, KP interim Information Minister Feroz Jamal stated that the police are able to deal with escalating terrorist activity, but he also stated that the Afghan government’s actions might help curtail militancy.
“If Afghanistan is at peace, Pakistan will be at peace.” Anyone implicated in cross-border terrorism should be punished with [in Afghanistan], according to the information minister.