BY OUR CORRESPONDENT
GILGIT: Security forces recently honed their skills by carrying out exercises at Skardu airport to preempt an attack on the airport premises.
Besides army, police, airport security force and rescue officials participated in the ‘surprise’ exercises held on Wednesday, a day ahead of federal government’s ‘threat alert’ issued to Gilgit-Baltistan [G-B] government asking it to enhance security at schools and other installations.
“The purpose of the exercises was to check level of preparedness by the forces,” said Obaid Abbasi, an official at Skardu airport, which is the largest airport in G-B. Besides army planes, PIA’s ATR aircraft flies there, as does the Airbus 320 three times a week.
“The full exercise was started without prior information to any force as we wanted to see how our law enforcing agencies can respond on our SOS call,” Abbasi said on Saturday.
A fake scene was created in which it was reported that some terrorists entered into the terminal building and wanted to take over control tower and building.
As part of the exercise, a security alarm went off and within minutes ASF commandos cordoned off the main airport building and closed off all access to the runway.
The Quick Response Force of army, headed by Brigade commander Brigadier Ehsan, commissioner, DIG police with police contingent, Rescue 1122 and city hospital ambulances reached the spot.
The building was then cordoned off by army and ASF commandoes and launched rescuing people, giving the dummy exercise a reality.
After the exercises, Brigd Ehsan passed a word of appreciation to the forces and asked them to remain vigilant in the course of duty.