World Bulleltin / News Desk
At least nine men, armed with rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons, have stormed an air force base in Kamra, northwest of the Pakistani capital, killing one security official, officials say.
The attack was repelled and only one aircraft was damaged, said an air force spokesman, adding that the Minhas air base at Kamra, in central Punjab province, did not house nuclear weapons.
"No air base is a nuclear air base in Pakistan," he said.
The gunbattle raged for hours, and eight men and one soldier were killed, the spokesman said. Commandos were called in to reinforce and police armored personnel carriers could be seen heading into the base.
The attackers moved through a nearby village under cover of darkness and climbed a nine foot (2.7 meter) wall strung with barbed wire to break into the base. Some were wearing military uniforms.
Security forces opened fire when men strapped with suicide bombing vests approached aircraft hangars, prompting other men to fire rocket-propelled grenades from outside the base's walls, said the air force spokesman.
Base commander Air Commodore Muhammad Azam, who led the operation against the attackers, was shot in the shoulder, but is in stable condition, said spokesman Captain Tariq Mahmood.
Search operations for any other suspects who may have been hiding in the complex after the attack had ended, he said.
Minhas, 75 km (45 miles) northwest of Islamabad, is adjacent to the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex, a major air force research and development center. Pakistan manufactures JF-17 fighter planes, jointly developed with China, at the site.
It was not immediately clear how the attackers managed to enter the sprawling base this time. Although the attack took place at about 2 a.m. (2100 GMT Wednesday), it is likely many of the soldiers on the base were awake for prayers or breakfast during the holy fasting month of Ramadan.
Faheemullah Khan, a civilian who lives near the base, said he was at a mosque praying when he heard gunfire and explosions which he thought were military exercises.
"Then we came to a restaurant, which is next to the main entrance to the base, and heard a louder explosion," he said.
"We saw six police vans rush in, and realized something was wrong."
Several squadrons of fighters and surveillance planes are believed to be based at Minhas.
"One body of a suicide bomber strapped with explosives has been found close to the impact area," said an air force statement.
President announces boost to state spending in Independence Day speech
Live-fire drills will be held for the next five days off China's coast in the East China Sea opposite Japan
The White House has been working closely with lawmakers, privacy experts and technology companies to secure Senate passage of what it considers critical legislation
Brazilian president calls military offensive in Gaza a "massacre," but denies any break in diplomatic ties with Israel
European Parliamentarian Margrete Auken addressed a rally in Copenhagen calling for a permenant solution
The warning came shortly after five soldiers were killed in clashes near the border area of Nahal Oz when Palestinians used a tunnel to infiltrate Israel.
A thick column of black smoke rose from the facility, which supplies the territory with two-thirds of its energy needs
Officials said 14 people, including five children, were killed in fighting on Monday evening in the town of Gorlovka/Horlivka
Hashmat Karzai was hosting an event at his house for the Eid al-Fitr holiday when a man set of hidden explosives
After the weapons were discovered, Cuba acknowledged it was sending "obsolete" Soviet-era weapons to be repaired in North Korea and then returned to Cuba.
The Obama administration has accused Moscow of conducting missile tests in contravention of a 1987 treaty, amid an ongoing diplomatic row with Russia.
Khamenei criticised the United States and European countries for what he said were their efforts to limit the military capacity of Palestinian fighters in the enclave.
Israeli aircraft fired a missile at the house of Hamas Gaza leader Ismail Haniyeh and flattened it before dawn. More than 30 people were killed in the assaults from air, land and sea, residents said
According to official Israeli figures, three civilians – along with the 53 troops - have been killed since the hostilities began. The Ezzeddin al-Qassam Brigades has claimed to have killed at least 110 Israeli troops
With peace talks due to restart next month, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia have launched attacks threatening the country's water supply
The Obama administration has struck back at pointed criticism from Israel over Secretary of State John Kerry’s latest effort to broker a ceasefire between Hamas and Israel.