Taliban attack on key Pakistan naval dockyard foiled


Karachi: Taliban militants aided by some Pakistan navy officials tried to storm the strategic naval dockyard here but security forces foiled the assault after a fierce gun-battle in which a naval officer and two militants were killed.

The brazen attack, the fourth terror strike on sensitive military facilities in Pakistan this year, took place on Saturday but it was kept under wraps due to strategic reasons, a naval spokesman said.

At least six militants tried to storm the facility on Saturday but the attempt was foiled by marine and army commandos who killed two militants, including a former navy official who had left the services a few months ago, and captured four others, officials said.

The former navy official, Owais Jhakrani, son of a senior police officer, was involved in the navy dockyard attack and was killed in the retaliatory firing by the security forces, Inspector General of Police in Sindh, Ghulam Qadir Thebo said.

In the fierce gun-battle with the militants, a serving naval officer was also killed and seven sailors were injured.

Defence Minister Khawaja Asif today said that some insiders were involved in the attack.

"There were some Pakistan Navy officers involved in this attack," Asif told reporters.

Outlawed Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed responsibility for the attack and said that it had the help of insiders in carrying out the terror strike.

"We had support from inside the naval force for this attack. This operation was successful because of this support. We will continue targeting security forces like this in future also," TTP spokesman Shahidullah Shahid claimed.

The dockyard located in West Wharf is used for repairing the navy warships and submarines.

A security source said that the target of the attackers were Pakistan naval ships in the dockyard.

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