Mortar fired from Afghanistan kills seven of a family in Bajaur

Three women, three children and head of family among the dead

By: AFP      Published: 01:23 AM, 3 Feb, 2020
Mortar fired from Afghanistan kills seven of a family in Bajaur
–AFP file photo

A mortar shell fired from Afghanistan hit a house in a border village of Bajaur district, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Sunday, killing seven people who were members of the same family, officials said.

“The mortar fired from Afghanistan hit the house of local villager Fazal Ghani. He along with his wife and five other members of the family died on spot,” senior police official Gulzar Khan told AFP.

The dead included three women, three children and the head of the family.

The incident took place in Batwaar Bangro village, some 50 kilometre from Khar, the main town of Bajaur tribal district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Khan said police and rescue officials helped the villagers retrieve bodies when they reached the site.

“The house (was) completely destroyed in the attack,” Khan said.

Anwar Ul Haq, a senior government official in the area, confirmed the incident and the death toll and said the mortar was fired from Kunar province, across the border in Afghanistan.

Haq said the mortar collapsed the roof of the house, killing the family members.

Pakistan last week briefly closed the Torkham border crossing after a mortar fired from Afghanistan landed in Pakistan without causing any damage.

Bajaur is one of Pakistan’s seven remote districts bordering Afghanistan.

All seven districts were once a focal point in the global war on terror but were brought under the control of authorities after the passage of legislation in 2018.

Security has improved in the region in recent years, with the Pakistan Army carrying out multiple operations there.