Pakistani army under attack in quake areas, relief process hampered
Nearly 2,000 soldiers are involved in relief operations after a 7.6 intensity earthquake hit parts of Balochistan last month, army spokesperson Maj. Gen. Asim Bajwa said.
He said the attacks will not deter the relief activities in the worst devastated areas.
Officials say that over 350 people have been killed while hundreds more injured in the earthquake. They say that around 300,000 have been affected.
Security officials said that militants on Wednesday carried out at least five separate attacks on army troops who were busy in distributing relief goods among the earthquake victims in Awaran district, the worst affected by the earthquake.
Giving details, military officials said that in the first incident in the morning, two army soldiers were killed when an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) exploded near a vehicle of the troops Mashkey sector of Awaran district.
The army troops were moving from Mashkey for distribution of food items, tents and other relief items to earthquake-hit local populace when they came under attack on the way.
In the second attack launched just two hours after the first incident, gunmen fired from a distance at army's Gishkor post established for earthquake relief efforts in Awaran.
In the third attack launched in the afternoon, a group of gunmen fired with small arms on army in Parwar area of Mashkey, when they were involved in distribution of rations and other relief items to the affected people.
Militants opened fire at the Pak army engaged in relief operations
In the fourth incident, troops were fired upon by militants in the area later in the afternoon when they were busy in distributing relief goods to the earthquake-hit people.
In the fifth attack, unknown gunmen fired with small arms and RPG rocket on army soldiers also in Mashkey sector of Awaran. No loss of life occurred in the attacks.
Chief Minister of Balochistan Abdul Malik appealed to the militants to stop attacks as the people were in dire need of relief goods.