More Than 40 Killed in Attacks in Three Major Pakistani Cities
Officials in Pakistan say more than 40 people were killed Friday in four separate attacks in three major Pakistani cities.
Nearly 100 others were injured in the attacks which began Friday in the southwestern city of Quetta when a car bombing killed at least 13 people and wounded 20 others. Senior police officers apparently were the target, with at least seven personnel among the dead.
Both the Islamic State group and Jamaat-ul-Ahrar (JuA), an offshoot of the Pakistani Taliban, claimed responsibility for the Quetta attack.
Hours later, two back-to-back bombs went off in the northwestern town of Parachinar, targeting a crowded market in the semi-autonomous Kurram tribal district near the Afghan border. At least 25 people were killed in those attacks.
Sajid Turi, a member of parliament from the area, told local the media that a low-intensity blast occurred during afternoon rush hour, before a second powerful bomb exploded.
The lawmaker said he anticipated the death toll would increase. Hospital sources said more than 30 wounded people were brought from the scene in critical condition.
The population in the area where the deadly blasts occurred is predominantly Shi’ite Muslims.
A military statement said it dispatched two helicopters to Parachinar to evacuate the injured to hospitals in Peshawar.
There were no immediate claims of responsibility for the Parachinar blasts.
Later Friday evening, gunmen in the port city of Karachi attacked police officers at a roadside restaurant, killing four of them.
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned the Parachinar bombings and said he hopes those responsible are brought to justice, in a statement released by his spokesman.
The U.S. State Department released a statement later Friday, saying, “We offer our deepest condolences to the victims and their families. We will continue to work with the government of Pakistan and our partners across the region to combat the threat of terrorism.”
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