A recent Security Report released by the Center for Research and Security Studies (CRSS) reveals that Pakistan’s security forces lost at least 386 personnel, including 137 army soldiers, in the first nine months of the ongoing year, marking an eight-year high as the country continues to battle militant violence.
The Islamabad-based think tank’s report states, “Over the past five years, there has been a consistent and alarming surge in violence in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Balochistan provinces. Equally greater concern is the collective percentage of violence-related fatalities recorded in these two provinces which indicates a disturbing upward trend over the last five years; together, they suffered 72% of all fatalities in 2019, and this unsetting figure surged to a staggering 92% in the first 9 months of 2023.”
🚨Alarming Trends in Security Forces Losses Seen During First 9 Months of 2023— The Center for Research and Security Studies (@CRSSpak) October 2, 2023
1️⃣386 brave lives lost mark an 8-year high📈
2️⃣% of fatalities among other victims (36%) hit an 11-year high📊
3️⃣Constant rise in fatal losses from 2021 onwards.🔼
📰 @CRSSpak Security Report Q3 2023 pic.twitter.com/LdFs6MER1i
There has been a trend of brutal attacks against religious congregations in the country, with more than 60 people losing their lives in two separate bombing incidents at a mosque and a gathering to mark the Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) birth anniversary on Friday.
“Pakistan’s security forces lost at least 386 personnel, 36 percent of all fatalities – including 137 army and 208 police personnel – in the first 9 months of 2023, marking an eight-year high as the country continues to battle proxy terrorism, largely in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan,” the Center for Research and Security Studies (CRSS) said in its report released on Saturday.
“With 1087 violence-related fatalities recorded so far during the year, the outlaws suffered 368 (34 percent), followed by civilians with 333 (31 percent) fatalities,” it added.
The CRSS maintained there had been a consistent and alarming increase in violence in the two Pakistani western provinces over the past five years.
Experts attribute the recent increase in militant violence and security forces casualties in Pakistan to the change of government in neighboring Afghanistan, saying it emboldened militant groups in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and fueled separatist violence in Balochistan.