ISLAMABAD: Four Pakistani soldiers were killed on Thursday in an operation to stop militants belonging to the Pakistan Taliban from infiltrating from Afghanistan, the military said on Friday.
Pakistan says the Pakistani Taliban, or TTP, have become emboldened since the Afghan Taliban seized power in Afghanistan in August 2021 as US and NATO troops were in the final stages of their pullout from the country after 20 years of war. Authorities say the insurgents, who are allied but separate from the Afghan Taliban, have found sanctuaries and have even been living openly in Afghanistan since the Taliban takeover.
“On 28 September 2023, at 1745 hours, own security forces thwarted an attempt of TTP terrorists to infiltrate from Afghanistan into Pakistan near Sambaza in Dist Zhob close to Pak-Afghan border,” the Pakistan army said in a statement.
“In the ensuing operation, Havildar Sattar, Lance Naik Sher Azam, Lance Naik Adnan and Sepoy Nadeem fought valiantly and embraced shahadat [martyrdom].”
The army said three militants were also killed in the operation.
The TTP has stepped up its attacks on Pakistan since November last year when it unilaterally called off a tenuous peace deal that had been brokered by Kabul.
The Afghan government says it does not permit its soil to be used by armed groups against other nations.