QUETTA/ISLAMABAD - As many as seven paramilitary troops were killed when their post came under attack by separatist insurgents early Monday in Loralai, Balochistan, an official said.

The incident occurred in Loralai area, some 310 kilometres east of the provincial capital, Quetta. “Seven soldiers were martyred when a post of the FC (Frontier Corps) came under attack in the early hours of Monday,” Manzoor Ahmed, a spokesman for the paramilitary force, said. He added that one soldier was injured, but remained stable. The situation turned tense in the area following the attack.

Nirak Baloch, a spokesman for the Baloch Liberation Army (BLA), claimed responsibility for the attack.

Around 40 militants attacked the checkpost with rockets and gunfire, killing seven FC men, including Naib Subedar Afzal, Hawaldar Samiullah, sepoys Muhammad Ramzan, Attiqur Rehman, Shahid Gul and Tasawur Hussain.

Security forces resorted to retaliatory firing, wounding several attackers. The militants managed to escape from the scene after the attack. There are reports that four daily-wage employees of Frontier Constabulary (FC) have also been abducted.

Meanwhile, additional contingents of security personnel reached the area while helicopters were also used to track down the militants.

The incident comes a week after the arrest of different high-profile militant commanders from the area.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif strongly condemned the killing of Frontier Corps personnel in Loralai, Balochistan.

He extended condolences to the families of the martyrs and expressed the government resolve to eradicate terrorism and militancy from the country.

President Mamnoon Hussain and former President Asif Ali Zardari also strongly condemned the attack on the FC checkpost in Loralai.

In his statement of condemnation, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said such cowardly attacks could not demoralise the Pak soldiers.