The Pakistani military establishment was left embarrassed and stunned today, when a small group of terrorists infiltrated on one of their top military bases, to conduct a brazen suicide attack. The insurgents were wearing military camouflages and armed with some of the most advanced close combat weapons. The PAF Kamra Aeronautical Complex in the vicinity of PAF Base Minhas is one of the most important locations of the Pakistani Air Force (PAF) and defence industry. The attack seems to be committed in retaliation to the recent PAF strikes on militants in the Orakzai Agency.
According to the local media reports, the attackers managed to infiltrate in to the facility at about 2 am in the morning. A fierce gunfight occurred inside the compound, between the militants and the security forces. Fortunately, the militants were eliminated before they could reach the hangars, where a large number of military aircrafts were parked. However, one aircrafts was reported to be damaged during the incident, when a Rocket Propelled Grenade (RPG), fired by one of the attackers landed near its parking lot.
Earlier it was reported that a total of nine militants were involved in the attack. The armed forces confirmed the death of eight attackers and one soldier. It is not immediately known whether any of the insurgents managed to escape from the area. So far, none of the militant groups have claimed responsibility for the attack. Still, the military officials are perplexed on how the militants managed to find their way inside the base, despite very high security.
Air Commodore Muhammad Azam, the commanding officer of the PAF Base Minhas was reported to be seriously injured after being hit by a bullet, but his condition remained stable. Meanwhile, the military officials denied media reports that there were nuclear weapons stored inside the base, at the time of attack.
More than 30 aircrafts were parked inside the airbase at the time of the strike, including a number of JF-17 Thunder multirole fighter jets. This is the second time in less than 18 months that the militants are targeting a Pakistani military base. On 22nd May 2011, 10 servicemen were killed in an attack by militants affiliated to the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan. Recently, there was also another attack on a Coast Guard camp located near to Gwadar.