Gunmen attack a southwestern Pakistani airport, killing 2Karachi: In yet another brazen attack on a Pakistani airport, heavily-armed militants today stormed an aerodrome and destroyed its radar system, killing two engineers in the restive Balochistan province. A group of around 12 motorbike-borne
Karachi: In yet another brazen attack on a Pakistani airport, heavily-armed militants today stormed an aerodrome and destroyed its radar system, killing two engineers in the restive Balochistan province. A group of around 12 motorbike-borne militants launched the pre-dawn attack on the Jiwani airport in Gwadar district, the site of Pakistan's upcoming port-city where China has made huge investments.
The militants attacked the airport, which has not been in use for the last 20 years, and destroyed the radar system. They killed an electronics engineer identified only as Khalilullah, injured another one while kidnapping a third engineer, Mahmood Niazi.
Niazi's body was later found several hours after the attack, Gwadar Deputy Commissioner Abdul Hameed Abro said. “They spared four local people who were at the airport at that time indicating it was an attack by insurgents,” he said. The airport is located strategically near the Pakistan-Iran coastal border.
Police officials admitted that there was little security at the airport when the attack took place catching authorities by surprise. An official said this was the reason that assailants faced no resistance and fled on their bikes after the attack.
Meanwhile, Balochistan Chief Minister Abdul Malik Baloch has condemned the attack.“Those responsible for the attack will be traced and punished,” the Chief Minister said. No group has taken responsibility for the attack suspected to be the handiwork of Baloch nationalists, who regularly attack Pakistani security forces and installations in the province.
Last year, armed men in security forces' uniform attacked the international radar system in the coastal town of Pasni in Gwadar killing one security personnel and injuring another. Militants had also attacked the Jinnah International Airport in Karachi in June last year in which 36 people were killed, including 10 militants.