Peshawar, Pakistan – A devastating attack on a police station in northwest Pakistan has resulted in the deaths of at least 10 police officers. The assault, which lasted for over two hours, was carried out by more than 30 militants, leaving four others injured, according to the provincial police chief of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
The motive behind the attack remains unclear, and it is uncertain whether it is related to the upcoming election. This incident adds to the recent surge in violence in the region, including the assassination of a candidate for the National Assembly and a rise in attacks on government and security targets.
The attack began at around 03:00 local time on Monday, with the militants using sniper fire followed by grenades. The attackers, believed to be from the Pakistan Taliban, Islamic State, and other militant groups, briefly gained control of the police station, posing a significant security threat in the lead-up to the election on Thursday.
The heightened violence has raised concerns among voters, with the Election Commission of Pakistan categorizing half of the country’s 90,675 polling stations as “sensitive” or “most sensitive,” reflecting the potential for violence. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in particular, has been plagued by a high number of attacks and counter-terrorism operations, leading to almost 1,000 deaths over the past year.
The severity of the threat in the region has been underscored by the difficulty of conducting operations against militants who have begun to blend in with civilian populations in urban areas. Despite the efforts of the military to combat terrorism, attacks continue to occur, such as the recent assassination of a political leader in Balochistan, followed by a deadly bomb attack claimed by the Islamic State.
As the election approaches, the security situation in Pakistan remains precarious, with voters and authorities alike facing the challenge of ensuring the safety and integrity of the electoral process in the midst of escalating violence.