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Pakistan: Over 63 killed in suicide attacks

24th Jun 2017
Pakistan: Over 63 killed in suicide attacks

By Islamuddin Sajid

 

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AA): More than 63 people were killed and 200 others injured Friday in suicide attacks, officials said.

The first attack occurred outside Balochistan’s provincial police chief’s office in Quetta, where a militant rammed an explosive-laden vehicle into a security check post, killing at least 13 people and injuring 14 others, a police official said.

Abdul Razzaq Cheema, Deputy Inspector General of Police, said it was a suicide attack that also damaged nearby buildings and was heard across the city.

Daesh-affiliated banned militant group Lashkar-e-Jahngvi Al-Alami has claimed responsibility for the bombing.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Interior Minister Chaudhery Nisar Ali Khan condemned the attack, saying terrorists who carried out such barbaric attacks in the holy month of Ramadan were not Muslim.

Dozens of terror attacks, including roadside explosions and assassinations, in recent months in Balochistan have targeted security personnel and civilians.

The mineral-rich southwestern province is a strategically important area of Pakistan. It is a gateway for a multibillion dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project, considered to be of major significance for the region.

CPEC will connect China’s Xinjiang province with Pakistan’s Gawadar port in Balochistan.

Following the attack in Balochista, deadly twin suicide blasts killed dozens of victims and injured scores of others in Parachinar, the capital of northwestern Kurram Agency, local political agent Basser Khan Wazir said.

The first explosion was in the city’s busiest Turi market, where residents were shopping for the upcoming Muslim eid festival, Wazir said, adding that the other blast occurred at the same location as rescue operations were in progress.

“Both were suicide blasts in which 50 people have lost their lives while 200 others were wounded, but the death toll could rise as many injured are in critical condition,” he said.

Emergencies have been declared in hospitals and causalities were shifted to the agency’s headquarters hospital.

The military condemned the deadly attack in a statement and said two army aviation helicopters had taken off from Peshawar to Parachinar to quickly evacuate to Peshawar those who are injured.

Local administration of Kurram Agency believes terrorists planned to target the Al-Quds rally in Parachinar city — the only Shia-dominated tribal area — but failed because of heightened security.

No group has yet claimed responsibility for the twin suicide explosions.

On March 31, a suicide bomber targeted civilians in the same city, killing at least 23 people and wounding 80 others.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry “strongly” condemned the attacks in a statement that called for “Allah’s mercy upon those who lost their lives as well as a speedy recovery to the wounded.”

It also offered condolences to the people and government of Pakistan for the attacks it said sought to upend the country’s stability.

“These attacks which took place on the eve of Eid al-Fitr in Quetta and Parachinar show the inhuman face of terror. We reiterate our solidarity with the people and Government of Pakistan against these attacks that aim to disturb peace and stability in the country,” it added.

Additional report by The Muslim News

[Photo: Pakistani Security officials and people inspect at the site of suicide bomb blast in Quetta, Pakistan on June 23, 2017.
Photographer: Muhabiri Mazhar Chandio/AA]

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