Major attacks against Pakistani security forces

Today’s suicide car bombing against a police checkpoint in the district of Charsadda in Pakistan’s insurgency-infested Northwest Frontier Province is the latest attack by the Taliban, al Qaeda, and allied jihadi groups directed against Pakistan’s security forces. Ten policemen were among the 16 Pakistanis killed in the attack. There have been 56 major attacks against the police, the Army, the Frontier Corps, and other Pakistani security and intelligence services since July 2007 when the Musharraf government launched the operation to clear out the radical Lal Masjid, or Red Mosque, in the heart of the capital of Islamabad.

These attacks include suicide strikes and military assaults against checkpoints, training centers, forts, and bases; ambushes against convoys; beheadings and executions of captured security personnel; and targeted assassinations against military leaders. No region of Pakistan has been spared. These attacks have taken place in Pakistan’s major cities, including Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore, and Rawalpindi, as well as in the rural areas and Pakistan’s lawless tribal areas. There also have been hundreds of smaller attacks in Pakistan that occur on a daily basis.

List of major attacks on Pakistani security forces since July 2007 [Updated April 18, 2008] :

April 15, 2008: A suicide bomber killed 18 security personnel after ramming into a checkpoint in as a convoy passed in Kohat.

April 18, 2008: A suicide bomber killed ten policeman and six civilians after ramming into a checkpoint in Charsadda

April 4, 2008: A suicide bomber killed eight paramilitary policemen in an attack on a headquarters in the heart of Islamabad.

April 4, 2008: A suicide bomber killed 17 civilians in Miramshah, North Waziristan while targeting a Frontier Corps checkpoint in the city.

March 30, 2009: A terror assault team, likely from Lashkar-e-Taiba, stormed a police academy in Lahore; more than 30 recruits and officers were killed. Four security personnel were killed in a suicide attack in Bannu.

March 29, 2009: A large Taliban force captured 12 policemen after surrounding their outpost in Khyber.

March 9, 2009: Taliban forces killed or captured 17 members of the Khasadar Force, a lightly armed paramilitary police unit, along with three government officials.

March 7, 2009: A car bomb at a checkpoint in Peshawar killed seven policemen and one civilian.

Feb. 7, 2009: An estimated 600 Taliban fighters crossed the border from Afghanistan and joined forces with Taliban fighters in the Mohmand tribal agency to attack a military outpost. Ten soldiers were killed.

Jan. 11, 2009: Thirty Pakistanis were killed after a suicide truck bomber detonated at a checkpoint outside Peshawar.

Jan. 6, 2008: The Taliban killed four policemen during an attack on a checkpoint in Hangu.

Dec. 3, 2008: Three security personnel and two civilians were killed in a suicide attack in Charsadda.

Nov. 17, 2008: Three soldiers and seven civilians were killed by a Taliban suicide attack in Swat.

Nov. 2, 2008: Eight paramilitary troops were killed in a suicide attack in South Waziristan.

Oct. 31, 2008: Four police and five civilians were killed in a suicide attack at a police station in Mardan.

Oct. 29, 2008: Five security officials were killed and 11 were wounded in a suicide attack in Bannu.

Oct. 26, 2008: A suicide bomber killed 11 security personnel in Mohmand.

Oct. 15, 2008: Four policemen were killed and 16 wounded in a suicide attack in a police station in Swat.

Sept. 22, 2008: Nine soldiers were killed in a suicide bombing in Swat.

Sept. 20, 2008: Ten soldiers were killed and 12 were wounded in a suicide attack on a convoy in North Waziristan

Sept. 6, 2008: Thirty Pakistanis were killed and more than 90 were wounded after a suicide truck bomber detonated at a checkpoint outside of Peshawar.

Sept. 3, 2008: The Taliban kidnapped 32 police recruits in Khyber and six security officials in Landi Kotal.

Aug. 30, 2008: The military thwarted a triple suicide bomb attack on a military camp near the Kohat Tunnel; five were killed and 37 wounded.

Aug. 27, 2008: The Pakistani military repelled a Taliban assault on the Tiarza Fort and the Tiarza Bridge Checkpost in South Waziristan. No military casualties were reported.

Aug: 21, 2008: Two Taliban suicide bombers killed 70 Pakistanis and wounded more than 1,000 in attacks outside a munitions factory in the Wah Cantt. The location is part of a complex known to house nuclear weapons components.

Aug. 13, 2008: A suicide bomber targeted a police van in Lahore during Pakistan’s Independence Day celebration. Nine Pakistanis, including five policemen, were killed and more than 35 were wounded.

Aug. 12, 2008: A bombing on a Pakistani Air Force bus in Peshawar resulted in 13 Pakistanis killed, including 10 security officials, and more than a dozen were wounded

July 29, 2008: A large Taliban force kidnapped 25 Pakistani policemen and members of the paramilitary Frontier Constabulary after overrunning a checkpoint in the settled district of Swat.

July 15, 2008: A large Taliban force overran a Frontier Constabulary fort; killed 15 constables; looted weapons, explosives, and ammunition; and then destroyed the outpost.

July 6, 2008: A suicide bomber killed 19 Pakistanis, including 15 policemen, and wounded 40 more in an attack outside a police station in Islamabad near the Red Mosque.

March 4, 2008: A suicide bomber struck at the Pakistani Navy War College in the city of Lahore. Seven were killed and 21 were wounded.

Feb. 25, 2008: A suicide bomber killed Lieutenant General Mushtaq Ahmed Baig, the Surgeon General of Army Medical Corps, and seven others in an attack on his convoy in Rawalpindi.

Feb. 4, 2008: A suicide bomber on a motorcycle rammed into a bus carrying military personnel in Rawalpindi; 10 Pakistanis were killed.

Jan. 27, 2008: The Taliban captured more than 50 paramilitary troops from the Frontier Corps during an attack on the Kohat Tunnel. Several of the paramilitaries were later executed.

Jan. 17, 2008: The Taliban took control of the Saklatoi fort; about 40 paramilitary soldiers fled the post without a fight.

Jan. 16, 2008: The Taliban overran a fort manned by the Frontier Corps in the town of Sararogha; more than 20 troops were captured.

Jan. 10, 2008: A suicide bomber targeted police stationed outside the Lahore High Court in the provincial capital of Punjab. Twenty-two policemen and civilians were killed and 70 more were wounded.

Dec. 10, 2007: Seven military personnel were wounded in a suicide attack at a Pakistani Air Force base in Kamra. Ten Pakistanis, including two policemen, were killed in a suicide attack on a police checkpoint in Swat.

Nov. 23, 2007: Two suicide bombers targeted the military and intelligence agencies in the capital of Islamabad and the military city of Rawalpindi. One attack was outside the Army headquarters and the other outside the Inter-Service Intelligence agency’s Hamza Camp. More than 15 people were killed and scores more were wounded.

Nov. 1, 2007: Eight Pakistani military personnel and civilians were killed and 27 wounded after a suicide bomber drove his motorcycle into a bus at an air base in Sargodha in the province of Punjab.

Oct. 30, 2007: A suicide bomber detonated his vest outside the Pakistani army headquarters in Rawalpindi. Seven were killed, including two police officers, and another 14 were wounded.

Oct. 25, 2007: A suicide bomber struck a convoy of Frontier Constabulary police forces and killed more than 30 paramilitary troops and wounded 17 more.

Sept. 4, 2007: In Swat, one suicide bomber targeted a bus carrying Inter Services Intelligence personnel and another suicide bomber targeted the Royal Artillery bazaar. More than 25 Pakistani military personnel and civilians were killed and 68 were wounded.

Aug. 31, 2007: A Taliban force captured a company of Pakistani Army troops in South Waziristan.

July 19, 2007 : A suicide bomber killed eight and wounded 26 in an attack on the Police Training College in the Northwest Frontier Province district of Hangu.

July 18, 2007: Seventeen soldiers were killed in an ambush on a convoy in North Waziristan.

July 15, 2007: Twelve Pakistani soldiers and four civilians were killed and more than 40 were wounded after two suicide car bombers rammed into a military convoy in Swat. In Dera Ismail Khan, more than 20 police recruits were killed and 50 wounded after a suicide bomber attacked near the main hall of the police recruitment center.

July 14, 2007: A Taliban suicide bomber killed 24 troops in an attack on a convoy heading to Miramshah, North Waziristan.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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9 Comments

  • ramsis says:

    well that figures. and all this comes on the heels of the pakistani release of Maulana Abdul Aziz, the red mosque leader. you’d think by now they would have learned, but i suspect pakistan will eventually appease away thier entire country when its all said and done.

  • Irish says:

    Looking at the list makes one wonder exactly how the rumor of Pakistans Intel and Security forces ever became involoved in the media. There is no model of logic that appeases all of Pakistan that is an illogical thought. The same goes for Afghanistan. But if anyone ever tricks the two into getting along poverty levels are going to go down.

  • Neo says:

    Muslim Khan, spokesman for the Taliban in Swat, indicated today that the Taliban would not be laying down their arms as part of the latest agreement.
    “Sharia doesn’t permit us to lay down arms,’ Muslim Khan said by telephone. ‘If a government, either in Pakistan or Afghanistan, continues anti-Muslim policies, it’s out of the question that Taliban lay down their arms.”

  • Marlin says:

    More details are now available about the Charsadda attack.

    The incident took place at a checkpost where police had erected barricades after the Charsadda DPO alerted the police to presence of two explosive-laden vehicles in the district.
    […]
    Police and FC were called out in the area. Rumours began circulating late in the night that another suicide bomber might strike ‘any time and any where’, setting off panic throughout the area.
    According to unconfirmed reports, two explosive-laden vehicles were used in the attack. Another suspected vehicle (AKA-1041) was found near the scene of the explosion. A movie camera and a hand-grenade were recovered from the vehicle.
    The CCPO said that about 100 kilograms of explosives were used in the explosion. An eyewitness said that the explosion was so powerful that a number of houses were partially damaged.

    Dawn: Bomber sows terror in Charsadda; 16 killed

  • Marlin says:

    It seems the Pakistani police are able to acquire intelligence. They just don’t seem to be able to use to protect themselves at the moment.

    NWFP Inspector General Malik Naveed said police wanted to stop the suicide bomber’s speeding car and fired at it, but it had reached close to them by the time the explosives went off.
    […]
    Naveed said the police had intelligence reports of a possible suicide attack, adding that security had thereafter been heightened. “We had intelligence reports that a car bombing could take place in any of three districts of the province,”

  • Bill,
    Logically one of the main demands of the Taliban were the release of Maulana Abdul Aziz, leader of Lal Masjid. Ex-Gen Zia ul Haq’s son remains a dear admirer of Maulana Aziz. It was speculated that the attack on Sri Lanka cricketers and possible hostage situation that failed in that attack was to seek release of Maulana Aziz.
    If that were the case, one of the major Taliban demands have been partially met.
    Is Pashtunistan a dream about to come true?

  • Minnor says:

    Time to modernise checkposts, i read attacks in afghan too. When a vehicle can be made bomb-proof, economically speaking, why not a structure? Pre-cast concrete for fast and multiple constructions. Remote mounted cameras and communications. Guard with RPG positioned in first floor.

  • Spooky says:

    Pashtunistan has nothing to do with the Taliban other than the fact that the latter have hijacked that ideology. The wish for Pashtunistan is a legitimate gripe of the those who were seperated from Afghanistan when the British drew the Durand Line. Indeed, before the Soviet invasion in 1979, the Afghan government was in bad relations with Pakistan over this issue. I think to this day they still claim NWFP. But since they’re so busy with their own internal problems, they haven’t brought it up. Yet.
    Maybe the West should try to see what can be done rather than assume status quo on the border. At least then, the Taliban lose one of their rallying points, even if the efforts come to naught.

  • Rhyno327 says:

    P-stan is sliding towards anarchy everyday it seems. Don’t they get it? The T-ban/AQ want to dismantle thier state. They must be stupid, blind or both. This is getting worse. How long till they take Islamabad? Thats not a joke. There is a real possibility here. India is NOT the threat. The threat is an internal one. Wow, cannot believe this…

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