Sunday December 10, 2023

Six Pakistanis martyred in Afghan forces shelling

By Our Correspondent
December 12, 2022
In this photograph taken on January 7, 2017, Pakistan security personnel look on as travellers wait to cross the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan at Chaman. — AFP
In this photograph taken on January 7, 2017, Pakistan security personnel look on as travellers wait to cross the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan at Chaman. — AFP

RAWALPINDI: At least six civilians were martyred and 17 others were injured in Chaman in Afghan border forces firing, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said on Sunday.

Using heavy weapons, the Afghan border forces opened unprovoked and indiscriminate fire at the civilian area in Chaman city. According to the military’s media wing, the Afghan border forces used artillery and mortar in the attack.

The ISPR said that Pakistan’s troops at the border gave a befitting but measured response to the uncalled-for aggression, avoiding targeting innocent civilians in the area.

The statement added the Pakistani border forces have also approached Afghan authorities in Kabul to highlight the severity of the situation and demanded strict action to avoid any such recurrence of the incident in future.

Sources said some Afghan nationals attempted to enter Pakistan with incomplete documents. When they were stopped by the Pakistani authorities, it infuriated the Afghan border forces, who launched unprovoked and indiscriminate fire on Pakistani border areas, especially border city Chaman.

Meanwhile, the border crossing, Bab-e-Dosti, was closed for all kinds of trade and pedestrians’ movement on both sides of the crossing.

A Chaman resident, Wali Mohammad, took his wounded cousin to a city hospital. He said there were a number of explosions followed by rapid gunfire. “We were in the street like any other day off when suddenly a big explosion was heard and debris hit many people, including one of my cousins,” said Wali. The Medical Superintendent of Civil Hospital Chaman said that they had received six dead bodies at the hospital, adding that 30 injured were also brought to the hospital for medical treatment.

An emergency was declared in the hospital to provide medical treatment to the injured of the attack. However, seriously injured people were rushed to Civil Hospital Quetta for medical treatment. Condemning the incident, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah expressed his concerns over the unprovoked firing by the Afghan forces. He said that details are being gathered regarding the tragic incident, adding that the use of heavy weapons by Afghan forces was concerning.

The interior minister requested the Balochistan government to provide full assistance to the affected citizens. He prayed for the early recovery of the injured citizens.

Balochistan Chief Minister Mir Abdul Qudus Bizenjo Sunday expressed his concern over the cross-border firing and rocket attack on Chaman. He expressed sorrow and regret over the casualties and injuries people in the area suffered as a result of the incident. He called upon the federal government to ensure an immediate and effective solution to the issue at the diplomatic level.

The CM Balochistan directed the Chaman district administration to provide full support to the affected citizens. “Civil defence institutions and district administration should also provide assistance to citizens in emergency situations,” the CM said and directed the secretary health to immediately transfer the emergency patients and injured people to Quetta hospitals.

He extended condolences and sympathies to the families of the deceased and prayed for speedy recovery of the injured.