Pakistani military officials reported on Thursday, June 8, that it had prevented an Islamic State (IS) group from setting up a base in southwest Pakistan. The group, the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) Al-Alami faction, was establishing permanent operations at a large base that included multiple caves and a bomb-making facility in the mountainous area near Mastung district. During the three-day operation, 12 militants were killed and five army soldiers wounded. Explosives, suicide bombing vests, weapons, and communications systems were seized in the raid, according to army reports.
LeJ Al-Alami, a faction of the broader LeJ group active in other regions of Pakistan, has claimed multiple attacks in recent months in Balochistan province, including suicide attacks in Quetta that have left hundreds dead. Army officials say the base was an attempt by LeJ Al-Alami to set up a foothold in the country with organizational infrastructure directly connected to IS.
Individuals present in Balochistan are advised to remain vigilant at all times and report any suspicious objects or behavior to the relevant authorities.
Due to a high threat from terrorism, as well as kidnapping and sectarian violence throughout Pakistan, some Western governments advise their citizens against nonessential travel to the country as foreign nationals, and in particular Westerners, may be directly targeted.