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September 22, 2019

Major Adeel was martyred while leading from the front


September 22, 2019

PESHAWAR: The martyrdom of Major Adeel Shahid in Gursal border area in Mohmand tribal district while leading from the front shows once again as to why the deaths of Pakistan’s military officers in combat are reportedly the highest in the world.

Also martyred in the incident on Friday was Sepoy Faraz Hussain. Sepoy Gulfam was wounded and is now under treatment at the Combined Military Hospital, Peshawar.

All three were from the Mohmand Rifles, a wing of the paramilitary Frontier Corps (FC).

Security officials said three improvised explosive devices (IEDs) were planted near the fenced border and these were blown up one after the other to target the FC men.

Major Adeel Shahid was the commander of the border post in the Gursal Gate, while one of the two sepoys was performing the task of mine-detector and the other carrying a scanning jammer.

Sepoy Faraz Hussain was a few meters ahead of Major Adeel Shahid followed by Sepoy Gulfam when they arrived at the site and saw the suspicious wire. Before they could locate and defuse the IEDs, the explosions began occurring.

According to the security officials, the place where the IEDs were planted is opposite and close to an Afghan Army border post in Nangarhar province. They wondered how the militants could plant the IEDs at a place located so close to the Afghan security forces post.

It was learnt that fencing had been done at the Gursal Gate border, a notorious smuggling route, about two years ago. This border crossing had been closed until 2012.

When the fencing work on the border began in the Gursal area in 2017, the Afghan National Army opposed it. To avoid problems, the Pakistani authorities stopped working at this point and decided to do it later. A flag meeting at the border between security officials from Afghanistan and Pakistan was also held subsequently to resolve the issue, but the Afghans didn’t relent.

Pakistani officials told the Afghans that they were doing fencing work of the remaining 700 meters in their own territory and this would be done in any case. Obviously, the Afghans weren’t happy about it.

The Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) said the squad under the command of the martyred officer was supervising fencing work in an area "which carried [a] critical infiltration route.”

Major Adeel Shahid, who belonged to Karachi, and Sepoy Faraz Hussain hailing from Kotli in Azad Jammu & Kashmir, were martyred on the spot.

Their bodies were taken to their native places for burial after their Nimaz-i-Janaza was performed first at the Mohmand Rifles camp in Ghallanai in Mohmand district and then at Peshawar.

Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, Corps Commander Lt Gen Shaheen Mazhar Mehmood and Major General Rahat Naseem Ahmed Khan, the Inspector General Frontier Corps, were among those who performed the Nimaz-i-Janaza and bid farewell to the martyred soldiers.

The injured soldier, Sepoy Gulfam, is under treatment at the Combined Military Hospital in Peshawar. His condition is stated to be stable.

The outlawed Jamaatul Ahrar militant group, which is based in Afghanistan, claimed responsibility for the attack.

Six of its fighters are said to have planted the IEDs and three were reportedly injured later in firing by Pakistani forces.

This was one more incident in which the Afghan soil was used to undertake terrorist attack in Pakistan. This was another occasion that an Army major led from the front and embraced martyrdom along with another soldier.