Pakistan: 4 killed, 20 injured in Balochistan explosion

By Aamir Latif

KARACHI, Pakistan (AA):  At least four people were killed and over 20 injured in an explosion in southwest Pakistan on Sunday, police and local media reported.

The explosion occurred in a busy Rakhni market in the remote Barkhan district of southwestern Balochistan province.

Police confirmed that at least four dead people and 20 injured were transported to a government hospital.

The bomb was planted in a motorbike parked outside a salon in the market, the police said, adding that condition of many injured people is critical.

Visuals aired on local broadcaster Dawn News showed rescue workers and locals shifting the injured in ambulances in a street strewn with broken glasses, pieces of stones, clothes, and shoes.

Balochistan Chief Minister Mir Abdul Qudoos Bizenjo condemning the attack, said, “Those who shed the blood of innocent people are enemies of humanity.”

“Terrorists are creating uncertainty to achieve their evil goals. But we won’t allow anti-state elements to succeed,” he added,

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif condemned the attack in a statement: “The terrorists will not be able to get away with this, an example will be made out of those guilty of taking innocent lives.”

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, however, ethnic Baloch separatists and the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, a conglomerate of several militant groups in Pakistan, have long been targeting the security forces across the province.

The large Balochistan province, which is also considered to cover parts of neighboring Iran and Afghanistan, is strategically important due to its rich copper, zinc, and natural gas reserves.

The province is also a key route of the $64 billion mega project Pakistan-China Economic Corridor (PCEC), which aims to connect China’s strategically important northwestern Xinxiang province to Balochistan’s Gwadar port through a network of roads, railways, and pipelines for cargo, oil, and gas transportation.

Additional report by The Muslim News

[Map of Pakistan from CIA Factbook/Public Domain]

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