There is no let-up in attacks on Pakistani security forces from Taliban militants based in neighbouring Afghanistan. On Wednesday, insurgents sneaked into the Kurram tribal agency and attacked a security check-post.
“Around 20 militants stormed the Nawazish check-post in the Dalasa area of Kurram. Two paramilitary Frontier Corps (FC) troops were wounded in the attack,” a security official told The Express Tribune.
He added that the security forces successfully repulsed the attack, forcing the marauding militants to flee across the Durand Line.
The injured troops – identified as Sohail and Haider – were shifted to a local hospital.
Earlier this month, a group of militants, masquerading as Afghan National Army soldiers, had crossed into Upper Kurram Agency and opened fire on local tribesmen who were chopping trees in the Inzarkai area.
Two tribesmen – Lahor Khan and Khwaja Dir – were killed in the attack.
According to a Pakistani official, the attackers had crossed over from the Afghan province of Paktia – a claim denied by Afghan defence ministry officials.
Militants from the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, who have found a ‘safe haven’ in eastern Afghanistan, have sporadically carried out attacks on Pakistani forces.
Last week, security forces had repulsed a Taliban attack in Chitral and Upper Dir districts, killing at least 12 attackers.
Officially, Kabul denies any safe haven for TTP militants on the Afghan soil. Instead Afghan officials blame Pakistani forces for shelling villages in the eastern provinces of Kunar and Nuristan. Islamabad denies the charge.
The blame game has soured relations between the two countries. On Tuesday, the Pentagon said it was working with the two countries to defuse tension between them on cross-border skirmishes.
“We are working closely with both countries, obviously, to try to limit violence along the Afghan-Pakistan border. We have obviously been in constant contact with the Afghan government to work on these issues and we have put pressure on the enemy that operates along the border,” Pentagon Press Secretary George Little told a news conference in Washington.
(With additional input from News Desk)
Published in The Express Tribune, July 26th, 2012.