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Web Desk
October 25, 2016

Quetta bleeds again; death toll in police academy attack rises to 61, 117 injured

QUETTA: At least 61 police recruits embraced martyrdom and 117 were injured in an audacious attack by the militants belonging to Lashkar-e-Jhangvi al-Alami at the Police Training College on Sariab road, here on Tuesday.

The attack began at around 11:10 pm Monday, with gunfire continuing to ring out at the site for several hours. Security forces were able to clear the area after five hours and the entry, exit routes were opened for traffic in the morning.

An emergency was imposed across hospitals in Quetta. The injured cadets were admitted into Quetta Civil Hospital and Bolan Medical Complex for medical treatment.

Suicide bombers blew themselves up:

Balochistan Home Minister Sarfraz Bugti said that at the time of the attack, an estimated 700 cadets were present inside the training centre.

Bugti said that the militants had targeted the guard of the hostel before entering the premises.

He further added that two suicide bombers also blew themselves up inside the training centre. One suicide bomber was killed before he could detonate himself, the minister told media.

Initial investigations:

The initial investigation into the attack revealed that militants used C4 chemical which is highly explosive.

Security lapse:

Interior Minister Ch Nisar has lamented provincial authorities for security lapses. Terrorists are on the run and growing weaker, but they have not been eliminated so far, he said. ‘I will ask the provincial governments as to why do we not remain alert all the time.’

Balochistan government spokesman, Anwar ul Haq Kakar admitted that security arrangements around the facility were not up to the mark.

Talking to BBC Urdu, he said no special measures were in place for the security of the college. ‘In the wake of current circumstances there should have been better and exemplary arrangements.’

Last month, IG Balochistan had also requested the government for enhancing the boundary wall of the PTC, and the chief minister approved it the same day but no progress was made later.

Lashkar-e-Jhangvi al-Alami behind attack:

IG Frontier Corps Major General Sher Afghan said that the attackers were associated with Lashkar-e-Jhangvi al-Alami terrorist group and were receiving directions from Afghanistan.

He praised the armed forces for carrying out a swift operation against the militants and securing the area.

"Within three hours the operation was concluded," he said. "What could be better than that?"

Security forces killed two terrorists and rescued 250 cadets who were held as hostages.

Eyewitness accounts:

"I saw three men in camouflage whose faces were hidden carrying Kalashnikovs," one cadet told reporters. "They started firing and entered the dormitory but I managed to escape over a wall."

Another injured told Geo News that we were unarmed when the terrorists stormed the training college that’s why we could not challenged them.

Intelligence reports:

Speaking to Geo News, Balochistan Chief Minister Sanaullah Zehri said in response to a question that the government had received intelligence reports a couple of days earlier of the presence of a couple of militants who had entered Quetta to carry out subversive activities.

"I am personally monitoring the security situation at the moment," he said. "Those responsible for the terrorist attack will be brought to book," he added.

Zehri said that as soon as the government had received intelligence reports of the presence of militants in the city, Quetta had been put on high alert.

Funeral prayers:

CM Balochistan, ministers, COAS Gen Raheel, DG ISI and other senior officials attended the funeral prayers of the martyrs.