CHITRAL: At least five suspected terrorists were reportedly killed in a counter attack launched by military troops early on Wednesday morning in Bumboret of Kalash Valley in Chitral.
Security forces confirmed a search operation was conducted after terrorist attacks on Kalash shepherds in the Garmai pastures of Bumboret over the last week.
The operation was under way when Afghan militants stormed the area and started firing. Security forces returned fire and killed five of them on a spot. A soldier was injured in the shootout.
The forces handed over the bodies to the Basic Health Unit in Bumboret where a post-mortem awaits. The deceased will be buried in Kalash. The Chitral police said Kalash and Muslim communities were vehemently opposed to burying the terrorists in their land.
A large number of military troops, Chitral police and border authorities cordoned off the bordering area and carried out a search operation. Security forces confirmed there were only five armed militants who attacked them, adding the suspected terrorists were between 22 and 26 years old. However, their identities have yet to be determined.
Two shepherds were slaughtered and over 2,000 goats and sheep were driven away by Afghan militants over the last week.However, there were some conflicting reports that Afghanistan-based militants wanted to eliminate the Kalash tribe altogether.
The Kalash population is around 3,000 and the locals have been gripped by fear ever since these attacks started on Friday, last week. They demanded that the provincial government and army personnel ensure their security and protection.