Pakistan News

Army chief condemns Taliban attack on Afghan army base

Army chief condemns Taliban attack on Afghan army base

Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Saturday strongly condemned the attack on a Afghan army base in Mazar-i-Sharif, said a statement released by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

The army chief "grieved on the loss of innocent lives and expresses solidarity with Afghan security forces and brotherly resilient Afghan nation", added the statement.

"Terrorists are our common enemy and we shall defeat them," Bajwa was quoted as saying by the military's media wing.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said the people of Pakistan stand in solidarity with the government of Afghanistan.

“We strongly condemn this barbaric act of terrorism. Our heart goes out to the victims of this terrorist attack. We express our heartfelt condolences with the bereaved families and pray for speedy recovery of the injured,” said a statement released by the PM House.

The prime minister in his statement added that terrorism is a common enemy and a threat to peace in the region.

“Pakistan feels the pain of our Afghan brethren as we have also suffered from this scourge,” said the PM House statement.

More than 100 Afghan soldiers were killed and wounded in a Taliban attack on an army base in northern Afghanistan.

Afghan security forces, beset by killings and desertions, have been struggling to beat back insurgents since US-led NATO troops ended their combat mission in December 2014.

According to US watchdog SIGAR, casualties among Afghan security forces soared by 35 per cent in 2016, with 6,800 soldiers and police killed.

More than a third of Afghanistan is outside government control and many regions are fiercely contested by various insurgent groups, as Kabul's repeated bids to launch peace negotiations with the Taliban have failed.

The US has around 8,400 troops in the country with about another 5,000 from NATO allies assisting a much larger Afghan force in the war against the Taliban and other militants Nicholson in February told US officials in Washington that he needed “a few thousand” more troops.

Earlier this month the US military dropped its largest non-nuclear bomb on the militant Islamic State group hideouts in eastern Afghanistan, killing nearly a hundred militants, according to unverified figures from Afghan officials.

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