Pakistani Army officers kidnapped and killed: officials

Terrorists shot dead a kidnapped Pakistani military officer while his companions were approaching to save him in the calm Southwestern province of Balochistan, the military said Thursday.

Baluchistan has long been the stage of low-level rebellion by the outlawed Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) and other separatist groups demanding independence from Islamabad’s central government. The government says it has subdued the rebellion, but violence in the state continues.

BLA, designated as a terrorist group by the United States in 2019, sent police officers and their relatives on Tuesday while traveling on a remote highway near the town of Ziarat, 100 km (60 miles). Claimed responsibility for the kidnapping. ) Northeast of the state capital, Quetta.

The family headed for a tourist destination in the area. Later that night, the attackers released all hostages except Colonel Lake Mirza and his cousin. The colonel’s body was found Thursday during a search by security forces.

Pakistani troops said the troops and helicopters had begun search and rescue operations and found up to eight terrorists in a nearby mountain storm drain late Wednesday.

“The militants shot the colonel when they sensed their possible siege,” a military communications unit said in a statement. Two of the terrorists died in the shootout, but the rest fled, he added.

Umar Javed, the body of his cousin, was found on Saturday and dumped in a drainage ditch in the area, subject to anonymity, because two Pakistani intelligence officials said he was not allowed to talk to the media.

Baluchistan’s Interior Minister, Mir Zia Lango, condemned Javed’s murder and expressed the authorities’ determination to “eliminate terrorism” from the state.

The military said in a previous statement that efforts were underway to find and rescue Jabed. During the search, security forces killed nine terrorists, the statement added.

Jaend Baluch, a BLA spokesman, denied separatist casualties.

Associated Press