Bomb kills at least 15 in Pakistani city of Quetta
HOME CONTACT US LOGIN

Bomb kills at least 15 in Pakistani city of Quetta
Vehicles are seen burning after a bomb blast in Quetta,
By Gul Yousafzai

QUETTA, Pakistan (Reuters) - A bomb exploded near a crowded market in the Pakistani city of Quetta on Saturday, killing at least 15 people, officials said, the latest attack to hit the restive southwestern province of Baluchistan.

Middle East-based Islamic State, which has a branch of loosely affiliated fighters in Afghanistan and Pakistan, claimed the attack shortly afterwards, saying a motorcycle suicide bomber had killed 17 soldiers.

The powerful blast hit as a paramilitary patrol passed by on the road, Baluchistan provincial home minister Sarfraz Bugti said, adding the patrol may have been the target.

"According to the information we have received so far, there are around 15 casualties, people who were martyred, and around 40 people were wounded," Bugti said.

He said a state of emergency had been imposed in the city and all hospitals were on alert.

Quetta's chief of bomb disposal squad, Aslam Tareen, said initial information was that a suicide attacker rammed a motorcycle into a military vehicle.

Pakistan's army press wing said the patrol was the target and there were at least seven civilians among the 15 killed.

It cited army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa as saying terrorists were trying to disrupt Monday's celebrations of 70 years of independence from Britain.

"Our resolve won't succumb to any challenge," Bajwa was quoted as saying in an official tweet from a top military spokesman.

Separatist militants in Baluchistan have waged a campaign against the central government for decades, demanding a greater share of the gas-rich province's resources.

Taliban and other Islamist militants also operate in the province, which shares borders with Afghanistan and Iran. A U.S. drone strike killed Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour last year in Baluchistan.

The province was rocked by a series of attacks late last year that claimed over 180 lives and raised concerns about a growing militant presence, including fighters affiliated with Islamic State, which has claimed several bombings in Baluchistan.

A judicial report released after an attack on the province's lawyers left more than 70 dead criticised security provisions in the region and called for increased clampdowns on extremists.

Interviews with Baluchistan police and an internal police report viewed by Reuters described a Baluchistan-based militant network in the province's remote mountainous area of Wadh with 500-1,000 operatives led by a former military asset. However, military intelligence officials denied the Wadh network exists and the father of the alleged leader says his son is not involved with militants attacking the state.

(Writing by Kay Johnson, editing by David Evans)

First Published: 2017-08-12 21:39:27
Updated 2017-08-12 22:06:28



© 2017 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved. Reuters content is the intellectual property of Thomson Reuters or its third party content providers. Any copying, republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Thomson Reuters. Thomson Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon. "Reuters" and the Reuters Logo are trademarks of Thomson Reuters and its affiliated companies.
Most read today
Most read yesterday
Send e-mail to for any enquiries or see Contact Details for phone numbers
Home   •   Terms & conditions   •   PAIA   •   Privacy Policy   •   Security Notice   •   Contact Details
Market Statistics are calculated by Sharenet and are therefore not the official JSE Market Statistics. The calculation/derivation may include underlying JSE data.
© 2017 SHARENET (PTY) Ltd, Cape Town, South Africa