PESHAWAR: Three paramilitary troops were killed and two injured in a militant attack on a checkpoint in the Mattani area early on Friday, police said. Sources say that the militants also abducted two troops manning the checkpoint. But police refuse to confirm the abduction.
“Heavily-armed militants attacked the Jani Khawr checkpoint in the Mattani area at around 2:00am,” Superintendent of Police (SP) Rural Circle Abdul Kalam told The Express Tribune. He added that three soldiers of the paramilitary Frontier Constabulary were killed and two injured in the attack.
Asked about the abduction of troops, SP Kalam said no serviceman was seized by militants. It wasn’t clear how many militants were involved in the attack. However, sources gave a different account.
They said that dozens of heavily-armed insurgents attacked the checkpoint, killing one paramilitary troop and injuring two others. The militants then overpowered four FC soldiers and took them away. “Bodies of two soldiers were later dumped outside the checkpoint, the remaining two troops are still missing,” a source told The Express Tribune.
According to police, FC troops are deputed along with police at different police stations on Kohat Road and Bara Road.
Dilawar Khan, chief of the Adezai tribal lashkar, told The Express Tribune that the attack occurred in an area which is close to the Akakhel area of Khyber Agency’s Bara sub division. He said there was a presence of criminals in the area and no operation had so far been conducted there.
He said that the Taliban’s activities were also on the rise in the Frontier Region (FR) Peshawar and neighbouring areas, and that they were regrouping there.
The area where the attack occurred is situated some 25 kilometres south of the provincial capital close to the border of the semi-tribal Darra Adamkhel. Militants have in the past used the Jani Khwar area to dump beheaded bodies. Though attacks on security checkpoints and policemen have been common in Peshawar, Friday’s incident took place after weeks of lull. Earlier, there were reports that militants were regrouping in the FR region Peshawar, where an operation was carried out in February this year.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 3rd, 2010.