PESHAWAR: A roadside blast targeting police personnel Tuesday injured seven people including three children near a school and a bank on Tuesday, Geo News reported.
According to the police, the blast took place around 9:10am at the Warsak Road in Peshawar. The police said the blast took place due to an explosion of explosives.
At least two children among the injured, shifted to the Lady Reading Hospital, are in critical condition, the hospital’s spokesperson told Geo News. The ages of the children, they added, are between 7 to 10 years.
SSP Operations Kashif Aftab Abbasi said the Machnigate Police Station’s mobile vehicle was on routine patrol when the bomb exploded.
“As soon as the police mobile passed by, the blast occurred three seconds later. The militants wanted to target the police vehicle,” he said, speaking with Geo News.
The police official said no arrests have been made yet, but the involved network will be apprehended soon.
Abbasi added that the CCTV footage of the explosion is being examined.
Speaking with Geo News, Superintendent Police Arshad Khan — who was present at the incident — said the blast took place around 9:10am and the explosives were planted at the roadside.
The explosives used in the blast weighed 4kg and were hidden in a cement block on the roadside, he said.
Khan added that the police have started a search operation in the surrounding areas. “The element of extortion is also being considered in the blast.”
“It would be premature to say who was the target,” SP Arshad Khan said speaking with journalists.
Following the explosion, police and Rescue 1122 teams rushed to the site of the incident in the Babu Garhi area in Peshawar.
Rescue officials told Geo News that the glass of two vehicles and nearby buildings was broken due to the intensity of the explosion.
Mayor Metropolitan Zubair Ali told journalists that the explosion near a school was an attempt to disturb peace and order.
“The explosion near educational institutions is unfortunate.”
Pakistan has been grappling with a surge in terrorism for the last one year, as terror attacks on security personnel and civilians intensified, particularly in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan.
In the last month alone, the country saw a notable surge in militant activities, as the attacks rose by 34% following a two-month decline, The News reported last week citing a report.
According to data from the ‘Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies’ (PICSS), a total of 63 attacks took place which resulted in 83 fatalities, including 37 security forces personnel and 33 civilians.
Additionally, 89 individuals sustained injuries, comprising 53 civilians and 36 security personnel.
Pakistani security forces responded with precision, eliminating at least 59 militants, while 18 suspected militants were apprehended. Analysis of October 2023 data underscores a 34% surge in militant attacks, a 63% rise in fatalities, and an 89% increase in the number of wounded during November 2023.
According to the PICSS data, the cumulative toll for the first 11 months of 2023 reflects 599 militant attacks, resulting in 897 fatalities and 1,241 injuries. This signifies an 81% escalation in militant attacks, an 86% surge in deaths, and a 64% rise in injuries compared to the corresponding period in 2022.
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