GILGIT: Security forces remained in search of Basari check post attackers and raided several houses in areas bordering Gilgit-Baltistan and Kohistan district on Monday.
Unidentified men had launched an assault on the checkpoint situated on the Karakoram Highway in the early hours of Sunday, leaving five Rangers personnel injured. The attackers opened indiscriminate fire using automatic and semi-automatic weapons from a distance of about 200 metres, and later fled following retaliatory fire from the Rangers.
The attack was the second biggest of such assaults on security personnel in the Diamer-Bhasha Dam area; an army colonel, captain and SP police were also slain there in recent years.
The checkpoint was established by Rangers on the directives of the federal government in order to man the eight-kilometre-long strip of land separating Kohistan from G-B–the ownership of which is disputed. “Search ops are under way. Forces will nab the attackers soon,” said a Chilas police official.
The crackdown began hours after the incident occurred, with Pakistan Army, Rangers, G-B Scouts and police officials participating in the search in the challenging Diamer and Kohistan terrain. Helicopters were also used in the sweeps.
G-B Home Secretary Sibtain Ahmed is also overseeing the operation and is in close coordination with Kohistan district administration.
Post attack measures
G-B Chief Secretary Sultan Sikandar has ordered the fortification of the check post. “We will facilitate the force in every way,” he said, while visiting the injured at the hospital.
Local leaders and clerics condemned the attack and demanded the immediate arrest of those involved. No arrests were reported till filing of this report. - The Express Tribune