Death toll in Pakistan attacks climbs to 56

Posted June 26, 2017

More than 80 people were killed in separate attacks in three major cities in Pakistan including a suicide bombing near the chief of police's office, twin bomb blasts at a crowded market and an attack on a group of police officers by gunmen.

The blasts were in a market and within three minutes of each other, senior government official Wazir Khan Wazir said.

No militant group has yet claimed responsibility but similar attacks in Balochistan have been claimed by Pakistani Taliban sprinter group Jammat ul Ahrar and Lashkar-e-Jehngwi al-Alami, an ally of IS in Afghanistan.

Another 14 people were killed Friday in a suicide auto bombing near the office of the provincial police chief in the southwestern city of Quetta, police spokesman Shahzada Farhat said.

Prior to that, a vehicle bomb explosion claimed 13 lives including of seven policemen and a political leader, and injured 21 others at Shuhada Chowk in Quetta.

According to Pakistan's military, it was using two helicopters to transport wounded people to other cities.

Officials said the blasts on the last Friday of the holy month of Ramazan targeted people shopping in the area and those heading out of the city ahead of Eid.

Anwarul Haq Kakar, a spokesman for the provincial government, condemned the attack and said that authorities had transported the dead and wounded to hospitals.

More than 63 people were killed and 200 others injured Friday in suicide attacks, officials said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

Islamic State also claimed the Quetta attack through a messaging network.

Pakistan has waged a long war with militancy, but security has markedly improved in the country since its deadliest-ever terror attack, an assault on a school in northwestern Peshawar in which Taliban gunmen left more than 150 people dead, majority children. The bombing in Quetta occurred near a local police official's office, and The New York Times reports that seven police officers were among the 13 people killed.

Nawaz also expressed deep grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives in the attack.

Following the incident, the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR), a mouthpiece of Pakistan army, said security had been tightened across the country and special intelligence based operations and search operations had been launched in cooperation with intelligence and other law enforcing agencies. TV footage showed panicked people rushing to safety following the Parachinar market bombings. Personnel of security forces had fired at some protesting mourners which had left several persons injured.