2,000 more Pakistanis hit by terror attacks

Five hundred more Pakistanis died and 1500 others wounded in bomb blasts across the country this year. But the Trump Administration is still not satisfied with the performance of Pakistani government, thanks to Indian lobbyists.

At least 380 people died and 1100 others were injured in 22 suicide bomb attacks reported this year so far across the country. Last year, terrorists had carried out 19 suicide bomb attacks that left 401 people dead.

No doubt that the ratio of fatalities and attacks dropped drastically but the wounds are yet to heal. Several terror victims are still under medical treatment with damaged or fractured body parts. Among martyrs were top police officers, cadets, and military officers, who left behind widows with infants and parents to mourn.

More than 200 security personnel died in the line of duty as they fought back bravely and killed at least 492 terrorists across Pakistan, according to a monitoring group that counts fatalities in terror attacks in South Asia.

The losses are countless, although the success and achievement was remarkable. The arrest of Kulbushan is a case in point. Security forces killed many terrorists and arrested hundreds of their accomplices in country wide crackdown involving combing and intelligence based operations and aerial raids.

Early this year, the country witnessed deadliest bomb attack. But terrorism incidents dropped considerably by the end of 2017. Following are the deadliest bomb attacks reported this year (till December 17).

In the worst attack, on February 16, at least 88 people were killed and more than 343 were injured when a suicide bomber blew himself up inside a historic Sufi shrine in the Sehwan Town of Jamshoro District in Sindh Province.

The shrine, built in 1356, was dedicated to Syed Mohammad Usman Marwandi, better known as Lal Shahbaz Qalandar. This was the worst attack, in terms of fatalities, recorded in Pakistan since the December 16, 2014, Peshawar Army Public School attack which resulted in 150 fatalities, including 143 civilians. The self-styled Islamic State had claimed the attack.

On February 15, a suicide bomber blew himself up outside a government office in the Ghalanai area of Mohmand Agency in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), killing five civilians. Another attacker was killed by the guards before he could explode his suicide vest.

On February 13, at least 14 persons, including eight civilians and six policemen, died and another 85 were injured when a suicide bomber targeted a group of police officers outside the Punjab Assembly Building on Lahore’s Mall Road. The attack was carried out during a protest by a large group of chemists and pharmaceutical manufacturers opposing a government crackdown against the sale of illegal drugs.

Deputy Inspector General of Police Captain (Retired) Ahmad Mobin and Senior Superintendent of Police Zahid Gondal, were among the martyrs. The terror-outfit Jamaat-ul-Ahrar took responsibility for both the February 13 and February 15 attacks.

Earlier, On January 21, in the first major attack of this year, at least 25 people were killed and more than 87 were injured in a bomb blast at the Sabzi Mandi (vegetable market) area of Parachinar in the FATA’s Kurram Agency. In a text message sent to reporters, the al-Alami (International) faction of Lashkar-i-Jhangvi claimed that it was behind the brutal attack.

On February 21, at least seven persons including a lawyer and an eight-year-old boy were killed and 25 others wounded when three suicide bombers attacked the sessions’ courts in Charsadda district of the Khyber-PK province.

On March 31, at least 25 people died and 100 others injured in a suicide bomb attack on an Imambargah in the Noor Market area of Parachinar town in the Kurram Agency of FATA.

On April 5, at least six people including four Army soldiers and an off-duty Pakistan Air Force airman died and 19 others injured when a suicide bomber targeted a census team on Lahore’s Badian Road.

On June 23, at least seven policemen were among 13 people who died in a suicide bomb attack near of the offices of Balochistan Police Chief. More than 20 others were wounded in the attack that took place on Gulistan Road of Quetta.

On July 24, at least 26 persons including nine policemen died and 56 others wounded when a suicide bomber targeted a group of policemen near Arfa Karim Tower on the Ferozpur Road in Lahore.

On August 12, at least eight Army soldiers were among 15 people who died and 56 others injured when a suicide bomber targeted a military truck near the Pishin bus-stop in Quetta.

On October 5, at least 25 persons including a policeman were killed when a suicide bomber struck crowds outside the shrine of Pir Rakhel Shah in Jhal Magsi, Balochistan.

On December 1, at least 9 persons including six students were killed and 37 others were injured when terrorists targeted the Agriculture Training Institute in Peshawar. On December 17, nine people were killed and 56 others injured in a suicide attack on a Church in Quetta of Balochistan.

As Pakistan continues to bleed, the US and India are not ‘satisfied’ with the performance of Pakistani government. Irrespective of the losses suffered and sacrifices made in the war on terror, the US President and Vice President are still harping on the old mantra “do more.”

The recent briefing by Pak Army Chief to the Senate has raised many eye brows with media reports suggesting that the US may strike inside urban parts of Pakistan. Last week, Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif said the blame game reflects the US diplomatic frustration in the United Nations and Afghanistan.

The remarks by a top Pakistani official come following the US Vice President Mike Pence’s statement that Trump administration has put Islamabad on notice to act against alleged terrorist safe havens. Addressing the US troops at Bagram airfield during his surprise visit to Afghanistan, Pence alleged that ‘for too long’ Pakistan had provided safe haven to the Taliban and ‘many’ terrorist organisations, but those days were over.

“President Trump has put Pakistan on notice. As the president said, so I say now: Pakistan has much to gain from partnering with the United States, and Pakistan has much to lose by continuing to harbour criminals and terrorists,” he had stated.

Security experts say Pakistan is no more interested in fighting the “US war on terror” on the Pakistani grounds. “Islamabad has made it clear to Washington that they would no more follow US dictation. Pakistan will do what is in the best interest of the nation rather than serving the interests of unreliable allies,” an official said who spoke to this reporter on the condition of anonymity. “We will continue fighting this war to make Pakistan a terror-free and peaceful state. But will not accept conditions from outside,” he said.

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