Two soldiers, two security guards and a policeman injured in stand-off.
Four suicide bombers who were trying to attack a Christian colony in Pakistan were killed early Friday during a gunfight with security forces outside Peshawar, the Army said.
Soldiers backed by Army helicopters exchanged gunfire with militants in suicide vests who had tried to attack the colony near Warsak Dam, the Army said. “Four suicide bombers with arms and ammunition entered the Christian Colony at Warsak after hitting a security guard at 5:50 a.m.,” the Pakistan Army said in a statement. “Security forces promptly responded and surrounded the area. Exchange of fire took place and all four terrorists were killed,” it said, adding that two paramilitary soldiers, a policeman and two security guards were wounded in the gunfight.
The “situation is under control,” the statement said, adding that troops were now carrying out a door-to-door search of the area.
Police officials, speaking to Newsweek on condition of anonymity, said there were 25 Christian residences in the colony, adding that it appeared the militants wanted to take a maximum number hostage before detonating explosives.
Discrimination and violence against religious minorities is commonplace in Pakistan, where Muslims account for more than 90 percent of the population. The Pakistani Taliban in particular routinely target minority groups, and in 2011 gunned down Shahbaz Bhatti, a Christian who was federal minister for minority affairs.
A Taliban suicide bomber targeted Christians in a park in Lahore at Easter this year, killing more than 70 people, including many children.