CHITRAL: Suspected militants from Afghanistan took away about 700 farm animals from the Kalash Valley in Chitral on Saturday in the second such raid in two days.
Bandits from across the border had killed two shepherds of the minority Kalash community on Friday and also taken away 300 cattle with them. The militants struck again within 24 hours. The Kalash community members said the robbers made away with around 700 animals. No casualties were reported in the raid.
They said a group of armed men from across the border infiltrated into Pakistani territory and entered Bareer Valley. The shepherds on seeing the militants ran away, leaving behind their grazing animals.
In a similar raid a day earlier, armed militants from the Nooristan mountainous region of Afghanistan entered the Bamboret Valley of Kalash and kidnapped two shepherds along with their 300 animals. The abducted men from the animist Kalash community were later found slaughtered.
After coming to know about the attacks, the civil administration in Chitral has also asked for additional security measures. A security official said the authorities were ‘closely monitoring’ the situation and strict security measures have been implemented on the border.
The raids by Afghan militants in the area when the famous Shandur polo tournament is underway in Chitral have been viewed with great scepticism.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 31st, 2016.