The Pakistan Army successfully thwarted a terrorist attack on the Mianwali Training Air Base of the Pakistan Air Force in the early hours of Saturday, resulting in the elimination of nine terrorists. This operation follows a series of security incidents that led to the tragic loss of at least 17 soldiers in Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Among these incidents were a militant assault in Gwadar, a remote-controlled bomb explosion in Dera Ismail Khan, a security operation in KP’s Lakki Marwat, and another remote-controlled blast in Dera Ismail Khan that left five people dead and numerous others injured, including police officials.
In an official statement released in the morning, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) confirmed the foiled attack on the air base, reporting that three terrorists were “neutralized” while three others were “cornered/isolated.” In a subsequent update during the afternoon, the military announced the successful conclusion of the “combing and clearance operation” at the PAF Training Airbase in Mianwali, declaring that all nine terrorists involved had been eliminated.
The operation aimed to eliminate any potential threats in the surrounding area following the failed terrorist attack on the air base earlier in the day. It was noted that there was no damage to any of the PAF’s operational assets, with only some damage to three non-operational aircraft that had already been phased out.
The ISPR emphasized that the prompt and professional execution of the operation serves as a strong reminder to all those who seek to disrupt the peace that Pakistan’s armed forces remain vigilant and fully capable of defending the homeland against any threats.
While the initial statement mentioned “some damage to three already grounded aircraft and a fuel bowser,” the military initiated a comprehensive joint clearance and combing operation to ensure the complete removal of any potential threats in the area.
Responsibility for the attack was claimed by the Tehreek-i-Jihad Pakistan (TJP), a newly emerged militant group affiliated with the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). In another development, the banned militant group Balochistan Liberation Front claimed responsibility for the attack in Gwadar, but there were no claims for the attacks in Dera Ismail Khan.
— قاسم (@salaar_gul) November 4, 2023
Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar commended the Pakistan Air Force for their resolute actions in thwarting the attack, emphasizing that any efforts to undermine the nation’s security will be met with unwavering resistance. He expressed the nation’s solidarity with the armed forces and their courageous resolve.
President Dr. Arif Alvi denounced the attack and expressed satisfaction at its failure, highlighting that terrorists are enemies of Pakistan, and efforts to eliminate them will continue. Interim interior minister Sarfraz Bugti stressed the importance of unity among civil and military institutions to combat terrorism, referring to the current wave of terror as a conspiracy to destabilize Pakistan.
Former premier Shehbaz Sharif, in his condemnation of the attack, acknowledged the repeated attacks as a sign of the enemies’ desperation and extended prayers to the affected families and security personnel. Former president Asif Ali Zardari praised the security forces for their bravery in foiling the terrorists’ plans and reiterated the nation’s commitment to the ongoing fight against terrorism.
In a show of unity and determination, Pakistan remains resolute in the face of these security challenges, as the nation stands firmly behind its armed forces in their unwavering commitment to safeguarding peace and security.