ISLAMABAD — Pakistan’s army said seven soldiers were murdered in separate incidents on Wednesday in the country’s north, at a region along the Afghan border which until recent decades had served as a foundation for Pakistani and foreign militants.
Six soldiers, such as an officer, died in North Waziristan, in which their military patrol struck two roadside bombs, though a seventh soldier had been killed in a shooting incident in the boundary Bajur area.
The assault at North Waziristan also wounded many others, along with another soldier who was injured in the Bajur attack on a border safety article. Nobody immediately claimed responsibility for those attacks.
The two Bajur and North Waziristan are tribal regions of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
Similar cross-border strikes in July and September in Bajur murdered two female soldiers.
Pakistan’s border regions served as a foundation for its Pakistani Taliban and other militants before a couple of decades back, once the army maintained it cleared the area of insurgents, although occasional strikes have continued, increasing fears that the Pakistani Taliban are regrouping.
Pakistan and Afghanistan often accuse each other of turning a blind eye to militants working along the porous frontier, which extends about 2,400 km (1,500 kilometers ) across rocky mountainous terrain.
A United Nations report in July said over 6,000 Pakistani insurgents were hiding in Afghanistan, most belonging to the Pakistani Taliban. Also called Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, the Pakistani Taliban is another insurgent group in the Afghan Taliban, though Pakistan’s militant bands are usually interlinked with people across the boundary.
Pakistan’s army has been waging a decades-old struggle with the Pakistani Taliban, several who have aligned themselves with the area’s Islamic State team’s affiliate, headquartered in Afghanistan.
Two Pakistani soldiers had been killed in a shootout with militants during a search operation in September, also in North Waziristan.