Pakistan: 38 killed in two suicide attacks in Quetta, Parachinar
More than 30 people were killed and scores injured in two terror attacks in Pakistan, with suicide bombers targeting Quetta city and Parachinar town in the restive tribal belt.Updated: Jun 23, 2017 21:57 IST
Hindustan Times, Islamabad
Thirty-eight people were killed and more than 100 injured in two terror attacks in Pakistan on Friday, with suicide bombers targeting the capital of Balochistan province and the Shia-majority Parachinar town days before the end of the holy month of Ramzan.
Thirteen people, including seven policemen, were killed when a suicide bomber detonated an explosives-laden car in front of the provincial police chief’s office at Shuhada Chowk in Quetta’s Gulistan Road area. Twenty others were injured.
Balochistan government spokesperson Anwarul Haq Kakar said the blast occurred when police guards stopped the car to search it near a checkpoint. Local officials said the bomber may have been planning to target another site but was forced to detonate when he was stopped by police.
“It’s possible the assailants were trying to enter the (Army) cantonment which is close by,” Kakar told the media.
The blast, which was heard across Quetta, blew out the windows of nearby buildings and damaged several cars. Officials said an estimated 75 kg of explosives was packed into the car.
At least 25 people were killed and 100 others injured when two suicide bombers blew themselves up in a densely populated area of Parachinar in the Kurram tribal region in Pakistan’s restive northwest. The blasts occurred near a bus terminal at Turi Market in the Shia-majority region.
The second explosion targeted people who had rushed to help the victims of the first blast, witnesses said. The area was packed with people shopping for the Eid festival and heading out of Parachinar for the holiday season.
Officials were quoted by the local media as saying that the explosions targeted people who had participated in the Youm-ul-Quds procession.
Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, a faction of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, claimed responsibility for the attack in Quetta in a message sent to the media by spokesperson Asad Mansur.
However, the Khorasan wing of the Islamic State released a photo of a militant identified as Abu Othman and said he had carried out the attack in Quetta.
It is believed the attack in Quetta was aimed at derailing the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project. Hundreds of Chinese nationals are working in Balochistan as part of the project. Militants from the Islamic State group abducted and killed two Chinese nationals in Quetta last month.
First Published: Jun 23, 2017 20:14 IST