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Three PAF staff chargesheeted for laxity in duty

PTI | Last Updated: Wednesday, October 30, 2013 - 13:36

Islamabad: Three Pakistan Air Force personnel have been chargesheeted in connection with a major terror attack on a key airbase in Punjab province.

Seven militants, armed with automatic weapons, grenade and suicide vests, had attacked Pakistan Air Force`s Minhas airbase at Kamra in Punjab province on August 16, destroying one state-of-the-art aircraft JF-17 Thunder and killing a soldier.

The three Air Force personnel - senior aircraft-man Shawaiz Khan, supplier assistant of No 3 Airborne Early Warning and Control Squadron at Aeronautical Complex at Kamra, Corporal Technician Mirza Waseem Iqbal and Senior Technician Zafar Abbas - were arrested for their failure to provide security to the aircraft destroyed in the attack.

However, the accused were from technical staff and providing security to the plane was not their responsibility, The Nation daily reported today.

The chargesheet was issued by Field General Court Martial of Pakistan Air Force (PAF) in Kamra.

The report said the trio would be court martialled on November 11.

All the militants were also killed in the counterattack.

The Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan claimed responsibility for the assault.

The banned group`s spokesperson Ehsanullah Ehsan had then said, "We are proud of this operation. Our leadership had decided to attack Kamra base a long time ago."

The Taliban said planes at the base were being used to kill its fighters.

Ehsan dedicated the attack to the killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and claimed the militants had destroyed three aircraft and killed at least 12 soldiers.

The Minhas base is adjacent to the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex, a major air force research and development centre.

The JF-17 fighter plane, jointly developed with China, is built at the facility.

A suicide bomber had killed eight people in an attack on a check post outside the base on October 23, 2009.

In December 2007, a suicide bomber had targeted a school bus and injured at least five children of employees at the base.

First Published: Wednesday, October 30, 2013 - 13:36

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