- Data shows 83% rise in August when compared with July.
- Pakistan saw 22 suicide attacks in first 8 months of 2023.
- Security forces remain primary target of militant violence.
ISLAMABAD: A sharp increase in militant attacks across the country has been recorded in the month of August with 99 terror incidents reported so far, a report compiled by the Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies (PICSS) stated.
This, according to the report, is the highest number recorded in any single month since November 2014. These attacks have resulted in 112 deaths and 87 injuries, mostly targeting security forces personnel and civilians, The News reported on Sunday.
The data stated an 83% rise in August when compared with July, as the month saw 54 attacks. The PICSS report also mentioned four suicide attacks, three in tribal districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and one in mainland KP.
The month of July, meanwhile, witnessed five suicide attacks, the highest in a year. Overall, the country witnessed 22 suicide attacks in the first eight months of 2023, in which 227 people have been killed and 497 injured.
The PICSS data also shows that security forces responded effectively to the militant threat, averting many attacks killing at least 24 militants, and arresting 69 others in various operations across the country.
The data showed that Balochistan and erstwhile Federally Administered Tribal Area (FATA) were the most affected regions by militant violence in August, compared to the previous month. Balochistan witnessed a 65% increase in militant attacks, from 17 in July to 28 in August, while erstwhile FATA witnessed a 106% increase, from 18 in July to 37 in August. However, both regions also saw a decrease in fatalities, by 19% and 29% respectively.
KP, excluding its tribal districts, also saw a significant increase in militant attacks, from 15 in July to 29 in August, an 83% rise. The deaths and injuries also increased by 188% and 73% respectively.
The province was mainly targeted by the TTP and its splinter groups, who claimed responsibility for several attacks. The province of Sindh witnessed a slight increase in militant attacks, from three in July to five in August. The deaths also increased from one to four.
The province of Punjab remained relatively peaceful, with no militant attack reported in August. The only attack reported in July was a low-intensity blast near a police station in Lahore, which caused one injury.
The data also reveals that security forces remained the primary target of militant violence, accounting for 50% of the total deaths and 63% of the total injured. There was a 51% rise in fatalities of the security forces in August compared with July 2023.