At least four paramilitary soldiers have been killed and two injured in a clash with militants in Pakistan’s southwestern province of Balochistan.
The military said in a statement issued on Tuesday that the fatal clash happened in Loralai district, which is located nearly 262 kilometers northeast of the provincial capital Quetta, on Monday.
Militants attempted to launch an assault on a residential compound of the paramilitary troops when they were confronted at the entry point, the statement added.
The exchange of fire led to the death of four soldiers and four attackers including a bomber.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack, but Baloch separatist groups and militants have attacked security forces in the province in the past.
On December 14, six Pakistani soldiers were killed when a paramilitary convoy came under attack by gunmen in the mountainous district of Kech.
In July, nearly 130 people were killed in a bomb explosion at a political event in the troubled province. Over 200 other people were also injured in the bombing, which was claimed by the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group, in the town of Mastung.
Pakistan’s restive and mineral-rich Balochistan province is rife with separatist, extremist and sectarian violence and has been the scene of several bomb and gun attacks over the past years.
Balochistan was rocked by a series of terrorist attacks in late 2016, raising fears about an increasing presence of armed militants in the area, including terrorists linked to Daesh.
Separatist militants in the province have also been engaged in a decades-long campaign against the central government.