Pakistan still menaced by terrorism amid stepped-up security

Despite stepped-up anti-terror efforts by the Pakistani government and security departments, the country is still menaced by terrorism as militants are continuously attacking different targets since last week.

TerrorismTerrorismOn Tuesday, a suicide attack at a court compound in the countrys northwest district of Charsadda is the latest of the recent wave, which killed at least six civilians, including a lawyer, and left over 25 others injured as well as five policemen, local police said.

District police officer Sohail Khalid said that three suicide attackers hurled hand grenades and opened fire at police guards attempting to enter into the sub-district court in Tangi area of Charsadda, but policemen foiled the attempt by killing two of them, while the third one exploded his jacket.

Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, a breakaway fraction of Pakistani Taliban, claimed the attack, marking the fourth suicide strike by the terrorist outfit since Feb. 13, 2017.

During last week, seven bomb attacks killed at least 119 people and injured nearly 400 others in different areas of Pakistan.

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On Feb. 16, a suicide bomber attacked around 800 people when they were performing ritual of Sufi dancing inside a shrine in Sehwan area in southern Sindh Province. The blast, which was claimed by Islamic State, killed 90 people and left over 350 others injured.

On Monday last week, a suicide blast hit a police party near a rally closed to Punjab province assembly building in Lahore city and killed 14 people and injured 87 others.

Following the last week carnage, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif vowed to take the war on terror to a logical end and authorized the security forces to launch operations to crush the terrorism.

Pakistani security forces took a number of steps against the terror networks across the country. The Pakistani Army closed Pakistan-Afghanistan border for security reasons and it also summoned an Afghan embassy official to the army headquarters and handed over a list of 76 most wanted terrorists hiding in Afghanistan.

Pakistani law enforcement agencies backed by intelligence agencies started countrywide operations and killed over 150 terrorists and arrested over 500 others, including dozens of Afghan nationals.

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Pakistan armys artillery troops supported by Pakistan Air Force shelled over a dozen terrorist camps at Pak-Afghan border since Thursday night and claimed to have killed 37 terrorists of Jamaat-ul-Ahrar.

On Sunday, Pakistani security forces reportedly killed at least 11 Afghan militants when they were attempting to enter into Pakistani territory.

The federal government led by Sharif has also started lobbying to win a unanimous support from both treasury and opposition benches in the parliament to give an extension to military courts, whose tenure has already expired in January after working for two years.

Secondly, the government is reportedly inspiring the countrys judiciary to quickly decide on the review petitions filed by 149 convicted terrorists who were sentenced to death by military courts.

Pakistani security and intelligence agencies are taking special crackdown on Afghan nationals across the country as Pakistans Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said that Afghan refugees living in Pakistan were used as facilitators to conduct the terrorist attacks.

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During a meeting between Pakistani Adviser on Foreign Affairs and Afghan Ambassador to Pakistan Omar Zakhilwal on Monday, Pakistan and Afghanistan agreed to work for betterment of relations between the two countries.

Following the Mondays meeting, Pakistani Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa said that Pakistan and Afghanistan will fight their common enemy of terrorism together, adding that enhanced security arrangements along the Pak-Afghan border were to fight their common enemy — terrorists of all hue and color.

Security analysts in Pakistan said that it would be an ideal situation if both Pakistan and Afghanistan cooperated with each other to fight against terrorism, otherwise both countries will suffer more brutal attacks in the future. Enditem

Source: Jamil Bhatti, Xinhua/

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