Terrorists allegedly belonging to the TTP carried out Pakistan University attack on Wednesday targeting students and faculty members.
Unidentified gunmen carried out the Pakistan University attack on Wednesday. They entered into the Bacha Khan University in the town of Charsadda situated in the Khyber Pakhtunkha province, and opened fire in faculty members and students who were massed for a poetry recital honoring the leader after whom the university is named.
The responsibility of Pakistan University attacks has been claimed by Omar Mansoor of Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Geedar group. Mansoor is also the alleged mastermind of the APS Peshawar attack. According the Mansoor’s facebook page, the Pakistan University attack was carried out by four attackers.
However, the spokesperson from the TTP also issued a statement right after Mansoor’s claim. The statement condemned the Pakistan university attack and termed it “against Shariah”.
The military announced that the area was cleared, however, a number of casualties are feared in the attack that resembles another school attack on the Army Public School in December 2014. 140 people had died in the attacks most of whom were school students.
Sources have revealed that the four attackers had donned suicide vests but were unable to detonate them before being killed by the security forces.
The spokesman for the military, Lt.Gen Asim Bajwa said that the four terrorist who carried out the Pakistan university attack, had been killed. The premises were under control with Pakistan’s elite commando unit, SSG inside.
Security forces had also cordoned off a house near the university where three attackers were believed to be hiding. The house was later cleared by the army.
Terrorists involved in the Pakistan university attack offered stiff resistance as the military tried to clear the premises. The ensuing gunfight went on for several hours. According to the intelligence sources, there were around 10 militants inside the premises who were between 18 to 25 years old. All of them had covered their faces and were wearing civilian clothes. Most of the students belonged to Hangu, Dir and many other parts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
All non-essential personnel including news reporters and journalists were required to stay away and not to interfere in the security operation.
Shah Farman, the provincial minister told reports that more than 50 security guards were present in the university. He further added that around 200 people had gathered in the examination hall. All of these people had been rescued. Shah Farman also said that the timely intervention by the army and the police had averted a catastrophe.
“The death toll in the terrorist attack has risen to 21,” Saeed Nazir, the chief of police told the AFP. He did not specify whether the number also included the terrorists who had been killed by the army. He further added that the operation had been concluded and the security forces were clearing the premises.
A rescue official who had talked to the rescued student told a news agency that around 60 to 70 students had been shot dead by the attackers. There was independent verification of this claim.